Extraordinary Stories About Ordinary PeopleSudha Murty, chairperson, Infosys Foundation and author, is known for her ability to glean interesting stories from the lives of ordinary people and weave these narratives into a unique blend of anecdote and fable.
Her latest collection of stories, 'The Day I Stopped Drinking Milk', features a fascinating cast of characters, each of whom made an indelible impression on the author. Extracted here is a nugget from 'Bombay to Bangalore', one of the most heartwarming stories in this collection:
It was the beginning of summer. I was boarding Udyan Express at Gulbarga railway station. My destination was Bangalore. As I boarded the train, I saw that the second-class reserved compartment was jam-packed with people. I sat down and was pushed to the corner of the berth. Though it was meant for three people, there were already six of us sitting on it...
The ticket collector came in and started checking people's tickets and reservations.. Suddenly, he looked in my direction and asked, 'What about your ticket?' 'I have already shown my ticket to you,' I said.'Not you, madam, the girl hiding below your berth. Hey, come out, where is your ticket?' I realized that someone was sitting below my berth. When the collector yelled at her, the girl came out of hiding.
She was thin, dark, scared and looked like she had been crying profusely. She must have been about thirteen or fourteen years old.She had uncombed hair and was dressed in a torn skirt and blouse. She was trembling and folded both her hands.. The collector started forcibly pulling her out from the compartment. Suddenly, I had a strange feeling. I stood up and called out to the collector. 'Sir, I will pay for her ticket,' I said.
Then he looked at me and said, 'Madam, if you give her ten rupees, she will be much happier with that than with the ticket.'
I did not listen to him. I told the collector to give me a ticket to the last destination, Bangalore, so that the girl could get down wherever she wanted.
Slowly, she started talking. She told me that her name was Chitra. She lived in a village near Bidar. Her father was a coolie and she had lost her mother at birth. Her father had remarried and had two sons with her stepmother. But a few months ago, her father had died. Her stepmother started beating her often and did not give her food. She was tired of that life. She did not have anybody to support her so she left home in search of something better.
By this time, the train had reached Bangalore. I said goodbye to Chitra and got down from the train. My driver came and picked up my bags. I felt someone watching me. When I turned back, Chitra was standing there and looking at me with sad eyes. But there was nothing more that I could do. I had paid her ticket out of compassion but I had never thought that she was going to be my responsibility!...
I told her to get into my car. My driver looked at the girl curiously. I told him to take us to my friend Ram's place. Ram ran separate shelter homes for boys and girls. We at the Infosys Foundation supported him financially. I thought Chitra could stay there for some time and we could talk about her future after I came back from my tours.
I was not sure if Chitra would even be there. But to my surprise, I saw Chitra looking much happier than before. Ram suggested that Chitra could go to a high school nearby. I immediately agreed and said that I would sponsor her expenses as long as she continued to study. I left the shelter knowing that Chitra had found a home and a new direction
in her life.
I got busier and my visits to the shelter reduced to once a year. But I always enquired about Chitra's well-being over the phone. I knew that she was studying well and that her progress was good.. I offered to sponsor her college studies if she wanted to continue studying. But she said, 'No, Akka. I have talked to my friends and made up my mind. I would like to do my diploma in computer science so that I can immediately get a job after three years.' She wanted to become economically independent as soon as possible.. Chitra obtained her diploma with flying colours. She also got a job in a software company as an assistant testing engineer. When she got her first salary, she came to my office with a sari and a box of sweets.
One day, when I was in Delhi, I got a call from Chitra. She was very happy. 'Akka, my company is sending me to USA! I wanted to meet you and take your blessings but you are not here in Bangalore.'.
Years passed. Occasionally, I received an e-mail from Chitra. She was doing very well in her career. She was posted across several cities in USA and was enjoying life. I silently prayed that she should always be happy wherever she was.
Years later, I was invited to deliver a lecture in San Francisco for Kannada Koota, an organization where families who speak Kannada meet and organize events. The lecture was in a convention hall of a hotel and I decided to stay at the same hotel. After the lecture, I was planning to leave for the airport. When I checked out of the hotel room and went to the reception counter to pay the bill, the receptionist said, 'Ma'am, you don't need to pay us anything. The lady over there has already settled your bill. She must know you pretty well.' I turned around and found Chitra there.
She was standing with a young white man and wore a beautiful sari. She was looking very pretty with short hair. Her dark eyes were beaming with happiness and pride. As soon as she saw me, she gave me a brilliant smile, hugged me and touched my feet. I was overwhelmed with joy and did not know what to say. I was very happy to see the way things had turned out for Chitra. But I came back to my original question. 'Chitra, why did you pay my hotel bill? That is not right.' suddenly sobbing, she hugged me and said, 'Because you paid for my ticket from Bombay to Bangalore!'
Sunday, August 26, 2012
Saturday, August 18, 2012
REAL HAPPINESS OF THE FESTIVAL
BY V. M. KHALEELUR RAHMAN
Eid-ul-Fitr or Ramadan Eid is celebrated as a day of thanksgiving to God after successful completion of the month-long fasting from dawn to dusk during Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar and on sighting the crescent moon of the 10th month called Shawwal. Ramadan is meant for fasting, worship and charity, and also for self-introspection for the purpose of purification of one's soul and body by giving up bad and attaining good things. The Holy Quran says, "Fasting is prescribed to you as it was to those before you so that you may learn self-restraint." Fasting brings people together and creates a sense of camaraderie among them. It inculcates in them righteous conduct, to be good people and brotherhood of man by eradicating evils such as anger, greed and malice.
Prophet Mohammed (Sal-am) has said, "Do not belittle even the smallest act of kindness even if it is no more than meeting your neighbour with a smiling and cheerful face. We should not consider any charity small or not worth doing. Charity, big or small, should be given in a pleasant manner without hurting the feeling of its receivers and with the thought that we are only discharging a religious duty from the wealth God has given us." According to Islam even our day-to-day acts, like being kind to others at home and outside, are charity and it makes a big difference in our relations with them.
Once when Prophet Mohammed (Sal-am) was on his way to Idgah for Id prayers, he saw a poor boy about five-years-old sitting on the pavement sadly. He went near him and asked, "Why are you alone here, my dear boy?" The boy started weeping and said, "I am an orphan with nobody to care for me." The Prophet could not bear the pathetic words of the poor boy and consoled him saying, "From now on you can look to me as your father and Ayesha as your mother," and returned home with him. When his wife Ayesha fed him and dressed him well for Id prayers the Prophet lifted him on his shoulders and said, "Ayesha, this is the happiest Id for me. I experience true happiness at the happiness of this little orphan boy." He was a great benefactor of humanity and his mission right from the beginning to end was to see that every individual maintained his self-respect free from any sort of slavery.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
PRESIDENT'S ADDRESS TO THE NATION ON THE EVE OF INDIA'S 66TH INDEPENDENCE DAY
New Delhi : 14-08-12
My fellow citizens:
It is a great privilege to address, for the first time, my fellow Indians living within our country and in a hundred corners across the globe, on the 65th anniversary of our independence. Words cannot adequately express my gratitude to the people and their representatives for the honour of this high office, even as I am deeply conscious of the fact that the highest honour in our democracy does not lie in any office, but in being a citizen of India, our motherland. We are all equal children before our mother; and India asks each one of us, in whatsoever role we play in the complex drama of nation-building, to do our duty with integrity, commitment and unflinching loyalty to the values enshrined in our Constitution.
2. It is important to remember, on Independence Day, that in the age of empires freedom was never given; it was taken. It was won by a generation of giants, led by a mighty man of destiny, Mahatma Gandhi, who fought with selfless, unflinching conviction against the mightiest power in history, with a moral force that transformed political thought and whose reverberations echo in great events all around us today. If the rise of European colonisation began in 18th century India, then the rallying cry of "Jai Hind!" also signalled its end in 1947. The final call to victory, "Jai Hind!" was given by Subhas Chandra Bose, fondly known to every Indian as "Netaji". Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, Baba Saheb Ambedkar, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Sarojini Naidu and many others charted the roadmap of independent India. These extraordinary men and women sacrificed their todays for our tomorrows. That tomorrow has come, and there is a question we must ask ourselves: have we honoured the great vision of these stalwarts, as a nation and as a society?
3. I was a toddler when Netaji, as Rashtrapati of the 51st Session of Indian National Congress in Haripura, on the banks of the river Tapti, reminded us that "our chief national problems are eradication of poverty, illiteracy and disease". His speech echoed through my home, as it did through millions of others. My father was a freedom fighter and through those long years when freedom seemed an illusion, we were sustained by faith in ourselves, in our leaders, in the strength of non-violence, in the courage of Indians liberated from fear. But we knew then, as we do now, that freedom must mean both bread and dreams.
4. Netaji and Nehruji believed that India could seize the future by an application of synthesis, samyavada, of what might seem on surface to be implacable opposites. They believed that free India would become, by example, an alternative model for a post-colonial world through economic equity and a social revolution inspired by harmony between communities that had been misled into hostility. Propelled by freedom of faith, gender equality and economic justice for all, India will become a modern nation. Minor blemishes cannot cloak the fact that India is becoming such a modern nation: no faith is in danger in our country, and the continuing commitment to gender equality is one of the great narratives of our times.
My fellow citizens:
5. I am not a pessimist; for me, the glass is always half full, rather than half empty. I would go to the extent of saying that the glass of modern India is more than half full. Our productive working class; our inspiring farmers, who have lifted a famine-wrecked land to food-surplus status, our imaginative industrialist entrepreneurs, whether in the private or public sector; our intellectuals, our academics and our political class have knit together a modern nation that has leapt, within mere decades, across many centuries in economic growth and progressive social legislation.
6. We cannot appreciate how far we have travelled, until we understand from where we started in 1947. As Jawaharlal Nehru pointed out so often, in his speeches and prose, India was not a poor country when our independence was snatched away. No one, I may add, travels thousands of miles to conquer a poor country. Statistics published by contemporary international scholars are proof for sceptics. In 1750, seven years before the fateful battle of Plassey, India had 24.5% of World Manufacturing Output while United Kingdom had only 1.9%. In other words, one in every four goods on the world market was manufactured in India. By 1900, India had been left with only 1.7% of World Manufacturing Output and Britain had risen to 18.5%. The western industrial revolution was in its incipient stages in the 18th century, but even in this regard India slipped from 7 to 1 in per capita industrialisation in that period, while Britain vaulted from 10 to 100. Between 1900 and 1947 India's economic growth was an annual average of 1%. From such depths we climbed, first, to 3% growth, and then took a quantum leap forward: today, despite two great international crises that rocked the world and some domestic dips, we have posted an average growth rate of more than 8% over the last seven years.
7. If our economy has achieved critical mass, then it must become a launching pad for the next leap. We need a second freedom struggle; this time to ensure that India is free for ever from hunger, disease and poverty. As my pre-eminent predecessor Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, speaking from this platform on the 18th anniversary of freedom, said, "Economic progress is one of the tests of democracy."
8. If progress falls behind rising aspirations, particularly of the young, rage will manifest itself. We are a nation that is becoming younger both in age and spirit; this is an opportunity as well as a challenge. The young thirst for knowledge that will lift their skills; and for opportunity that will put India on the fast track to the first world. They have the character; they need the chance. Education is the seed; and economy is the fruit. Provide good education; disease, hunger and poverty will recede. As I said in my acceptance speech, our motto must be: All for knowledge and knowledge for all. Vision cannot be an open-ended vista; it must be focused on our youth.
My fellow citizens:
9. Notwithstanding the tremendous pressure of an adverse external environment, our economy today is more resilient and confident. Two decades of steady economic reforms have contributed to improvement in average income and consumption levels in both rural and urban areas. There is new found dynamism in some of the most backward areas bringing them into national economic mainstream. Yet there are several gaps that need to be bridged. Green revolution has to be extended to the eastern region of our country. Creation of high quality infrastructure has to be fast tracked. Education and health services have to reach the last man at the earliest. Much has been done, a lot more remains to be done.
10. The monsoon has played truant this year. Large areas of our country are in the grip of drought, some others are devastated by floods. Inflation, particularly food inflation, remains a cause of worry, While our food availability remains healthy, we cannot forget the plight of those who made this possible even in a lean year; our farmers. They have stood by the nation in its need; the nation must stand by them in their distress.
11. I do not believe that there is any inherent contradiction in protecting our environment and economic development. As long as we heed Gandhiji's great lesson: there is sufficient in the world for man's need but not for man's greed, we are safe. We must learn to live in harmony with nature. Nature cannot be consistent; we must be able to conserve her bounty during the many seasons of plenty so that we are not bereft during the occasional bout of scarcity.
12. Anger against the bitter pandemic of corruption is legitimate, as is the protest against this plague that is eroding the capability and potential of our nation. There are times when people lose their patience but it cannot become an excuse for an assault on our democratic institutions.
13. Institutions are the visible pillars of our Constitution, and if they crack then the idealism of our Constitution cannot hold. They are the interface between principles and the people. Our institutions may have suffered from the weariness of time; the answer is not to destroy what has been built, but to re-engineer them so that they become stronger than before. Institutions are the guardians of our liberty.
14. The vigilance on our frontiers has to be matched with vigilance within; we must restore the credibility of those areas of our polity, judiciary, executive and legislature where complacency, exhaustion or malfeasance may have clogged delivery. The people have a right to express their discontent. But we must also understand that legislation cannot be wrenched away from the legislature or justice from the judiciary.
15. When authority becomes authoritarian, democracy suffers; but when protest becomes endemic, we are flirting with chaos. Democracy is a shared process. We all win or lose together. Democratic temper calls for dignity of behaviour and tolerance of contrary views. Parliament will live by its own calendar and rhythm. Sometimes that rhythm sounds a bit atonal; but in a democracy there is always judgement day, an election. Parliament is the soul of the people, the "Atman" of India. We challenge its rights and duties at our peril.
16. I say this not in a spirit of admonition, but as a plea for greater understanding of the existential issues that lurk behind the mask of the mundane. Democracy is blessed with a unique opportunity for redress of grievances through the great institution of accountability - free elections.
17. Old fires that threaten the stability of our nation have not been fully doused; the ash continues to smoulder. It is particularly painful for me to witness the violence in Assam. Our minorities need solace, understanding and protection from aggression. Violence is not an option; violence is an invitation to greater violence. Concrete attempts have been made to heal the wounds of Assam, including the Assam accord conceived by our young and beloved former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. We should revisit them, and adapt them to present conditions in the spirit of justice and national interest. We need peace for a new economic surge that eliminates the competitive causes of violence.
18. It is a fact of our geopolitical environment that some problems transcend borders. SAARC was created 27 years ago to find solutions through dialogue, and by mutual cooperation create the rapid economic growth that is the only long-term answer to problems like migration and uneven development. SAARC must acquire vigour to fulfil its mandate.
19. The SAARC should be a major instrument in the common war against terrorists. Great success is possible by international cooperation. All SAARC nations must cooperate to bring to justice those who believe in mayhem against innocents. There is no other way towards peace on the subcontinent.
20. I am proud of our brave armed forces and our valiant police forces, who have done so much, at such great personal risk, to curb this menace of terrorism. It is their vigilance which has prevented more havoc. If we sleep in peace it is because they are awake and vigilant in the desolation of desert and mountain and forest; and in the vast loneliness of the seas. I salute their commitment and their patriotism. It is heartening that the armed forces not only guarantee our peace, but also produce medal winners at Olympics. I congratulate all who have done their nation proud at the recently concluded Games, by winning as well as by participating. The number of trophies may not be too large but it is a remarkable improvement upon the last count, Four years later, when I hope to address you again, I am sure, we will celebrate a medals spring.
My fellow citizens:
21. If there is one man in history whose name is synonymous with peace, then it is Gandhiji, the architect of our independence. India is a land of plenty inhibited by poverty; India has an enthralling, uplifting civilization that sparkles not only in our magnificent art, but also in the enormous creativity and humanity of our daily life in city and village. When Indira Gandhi reached for the stars, she believed that this would be within the grasp of India in just another generation. But there is neither a present nor a future, except in a climate and culture of national unity and brotherhood.
My fellow citizens:
Let us leave behind the way of hatred, violence and anger;Let us repose our faith in this invocation from Upanishads:
Let us put aside our petty quarrels and factions.
Let us work together for our nation with the devotion of a child towards a mother.
Let us put aside our petty quarrels and factions.
Let us work together for our nation with the devotion of a child towards a mother.
May God Protect us.
May God Nourish us.
May we Work Together with Vigour and Energy.
May our Studies be Brilliant.
May there be no Hostility amongst us.
May there be Peace Peace Peace.
Sunday, August 12, 2012
LIST OF TAMILNADU GOVERNMENT MEDICAL COLLEGES
College Name & Address
Madras Medical College and Government General Hospital
E.V.R Periyar Salai, Park Town,
Chennai, Tamil Nadu - 600 003
Phone : 044 - 25305000, 25363970
email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Website : http://www.mmc.tn.gov.in
Stanley Medical College
Old Jail Road, Chennai, Tamilnadu - 600 001, India.
Website : http://www.stanmed.net
Government Kilpauk Medical College,
Poonamallee High Road,
Kilpauk, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600010
Phone : 044 - 26412979,26431927
Website : http://www.gkmc.in
Chengalpattu Medical College
Chengalpattu, Tamil Nadu
Thanjavur Medical College,
Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu
Phone : 04362-240851, 04362-240951
Madurai Medical College
Tamil Nadu, 625020.
Coimbatore Medical College,
Avinashi Road, Coimbatore - 641014
Ph: 0422 - 2574375, 2574376.
Website : http://www.cmchtn.in
Tirunelveli Medical College
Government Mohan Kumaramangalam Medical College,
Phone : 0427-2483313
K.A.P. Viswanatham Govt. Medical College,
Periya Milagu Paari,
Collector Office Rd,
Tiruchirapalli - 1, Tamil Nadu
Phone : 04143 - 2401011
Thoothukudi Medical College,
Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu 628001
Vellore Medical College,
Kanyakumari Medical College,
Theni Medical College, Theni.
Dharmapuri Medical College, Dharmapuri.
Villupuram Medical College, Villupuram.
Thiruvarur Medical College, Thiruvarur
LIST OF SELF FINANCING MEDICAL COLLEGES IN TAMILNADU
College Name & Address
CHRISTIAN MEDICAL COLLEGE,
BAGAYAM, THORAPADI POST
VELLORE - 632 002
website : http://home.cmcvellore.ac.in, http://www.cmch-vellore.edu
email : email@example.com
PSG INSTITUTE OF MEDICAL SCIENCE &Â Â RESEARCH
P.B. NO 1674 , AVANASHI ROAD
COIMBATORE - 641 004
website : http://www.psgimsr.in
email : firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
IRT PERUNDURAI MEDICAL COLLEGE
PERUNDURAI SANITORIUM - 638 053
email : firstname.lastname@example.org
SREE MOOKAMBIKA INSTITUTE OF MEDICALÂ Â SCIENCES
KANYAKUMARI DISTRICT - 629 161
website : http://smims.org
MELMARUVATHUR ADIPARASAKTHI INSTITUTE OF MEDICAL SCIENCES AND RESEARCH
MELMARUVATHUR - 603 319.
website : http://www.mapims.org
email : email@example.com
KARPAGA VINAYAGA INSTITUTE OF MEDICALÂ SCIENCES AND RESEARCH CENTRE
GST ROAD, CHINNA KOLAMBAKKAM,
KANCHIPURAM DISTRICT - 603 308
website : http://www.kims.edu.in
email : firstname.lastname@example.org
SRI MUTHUKUMARAN MEDICAL COLLEGE, HOSPITAL AND RESEARCH INSTITUTE,
CHENNAI - 600 069.
email : email@example.com
TAGORE MEDICAL COLLEGE AND HOSPITAL
CHENNAI - 48
D.D.MEDICAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
CHENNAI - 631210.
CHENNAI MEDICAL COLLEGE HOSPITAL & RESEARCH CENTRE
TRICHY- 621 105.
email : firstname.lastname@example.org
CHETTINAD HOSPITAL AND RESEARCH INSTITUTE,
List of Dental Colleges in Tamilnadu
College Name & Address
TAMILNADU GOVERNMENT DENTAL COLLEGE
Ph: +91-44-25340441 DIR:25340681
VINAYAKA MISSIONS SANKARACHARIYAR DENTAL COLLEGE
SANKARI MAIN ROAD, ARIYANOOR
E.Mail: email@example.com, VMTrust@tr.dot.net.in
J.K.K.NATARAJAH DENTAL COLLEGE
SALEM MAIN ROAD, KOMARAPALAYAM-638 183
RAJAS DENTAL COLLEGE& HOSPITAL
THIRURAJAPURAM, KAVALKINARU JUNCTION 627 105
Ph: +91-4637-230163/230066/230142 O:230066
RAGAS DENTAL COLLEGE, & HOSPITAL
2/102 EAST COAST ROAD
UTHANDI, CHENNAI 600 119
SAVEETHA DENTAL COLLEGE
112, POONAMALLEE HIGH ROAD,
SREE BALAJI DENTAL COLLEGE
VELACHERY MAIN ROAD,
Ph: +91-44-22461883 DIR 22460623
Website : www.sbdch.com
MEENAKSHI AMMAL DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
ALAPAKKAM MAIN ROAD, MADURAVOYAL,
THAI MOOGAMBIGAI DENTAL COLLEGE
GOLDEN GEORGE NAGAR,
MOGAPPAIR, CHENNAI-600 107.
SRM DENTAL COLLEGE
RAMAPURAM, CHENNAI 600-089
SREE MOOKAMBIKA INSTITUTE OF DENTAL SCIENCES
TAMILNADU 629 161
SREE RAMAKRISHNA DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
COIMBATORE - 641 006.
KSR INSTITUTE. OF DENTAL SCIENCE & RESEARCH
KSR KALVI NAGAR , THAKKAVADI POST
ADIPARASAKTHI DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
KANCHIPURAM DISTRICT 603319
Ph. 04115 229313, 229217
Fax: 04115 229111
THE TRICHY RAJAS DENTAL COLLEGE
Raja Nagar, Nagamangalam
Tiruchirapalli 620 012
Ph. 0431 3205736
Fax : 0431 2680295
VIVEKANANDA DENTAL COLLEGE FOR WOMEN
Ph: +91 (4288) 234427 / 234676 / 234891 / 234670
Fax: (04288) 234890 , 234890
C.S.I. COLLEGE OF DENTAL SCIENCES & RESEARCH
No.129, East Veli Street,
Madurai 625 001.
Ph. : 0452 2321708
CHETTINAD DENTAL COLLEGE & RESEARCH INSTITUTE
IT HIGHWAY, (OLD MAHABALIPURAM ROAD)
KANCHEEPURAM DISTRICT - 603 103
Ph - 044 - 27475090, 27475995
MADHA DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
MADHA NAGAR, KUNRATHUR
CHENNAI 600 069
Ph - 4780732 / 4780734 / 4780735 /4780899
Fax : 4780798
BEST DENTAL SCIENCE COLLEGE
NO. 69/1-A, MELUR ROAD,
MADURAI 625 104
Ph - 0452 - 2423290 / 91
Fax - 0452 - 2539828
SRI VENKATESWARA DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
THALAMBUR, OFF - OLD MAHABALIPURAM ROAD,
I.T. HIGHWAY, NEAR NAVALUR,
KANCHIPURAM DISTRICT 603 103
Ph : 044 - 27435528 / 27435711
Fax : 044 - 27435769
PRIYADARSHINI DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
TIRUVALLUR TK & DISTRICT - 631 203
Ph : 27650364 / 464/ 488
KARPAGA VINAYAKA INSTITUTE OF DENTAL SCIENCES
G.S.T ROAD, CHINNAKOLAMBAKKAM
TAGORE DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
VANDALUR, CHENNAI 600 048
R.V.S. DENTAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
TRICHY ROAD, KANNAMPALAYAM
COIMBATORE - 641 402
UNUNDERSTANDABLE LEATHER MARKET
V.M. Khaleelur Rahman
One fails to understand the present leather market. It may be good for some but certainly not so for many despite ruling high prices and so called “good demand”. However in the Chennai leather market tanned and wet blue tanners are able to get good support from products manufacturers who are in need of these items. Enquiries reveal that shoe manufacturers continue to buy tanned goat skins higher grain selections at around Rs.60, All Suedes at around Rs.53 and Linings at around Rs.42 per sq. ft. respectively and other lower grades are not in as good demand as before. On the whole the robust demand which existed for hides and skins till recently seems to be somewhat on the decline. Sheep leathers are slow in movements but there is not much reduction in prices quoted by tanners. Perhaps same is the case in buffalo calf, cow calf and hides. Generally speaking even big tanners are in a fix not knowing the future trends of the market here as well as abroad.
Export market is also slow particularly in Europe. Countries like Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan etc. are in the market operating in their regular items mostly in lining selections at around US$ 1.50 per sq. ft. C&F. Every customer seems to be cautious. Only those importers who require goods immediately operate in the market and speculators are mostly absent because of the present high prices and unpredictable market conditions. The leather fairs held recently in different places in India and abroad were considered to be of little use without considerable contracts. There seems to be some decline in exports also.
Offers made by tanners are at around the following lines:
F/C AND S/C GOAT LEATHERS
Price US$ per sq. ft. C&F
Goat upper leather
3/5 and 4/7
Goat suede leather
3/5 and 4/7
Goat lining leather
F/C SHEEP LEATHERS
Price US$ per sq.ft. C&F
Sheep suede/cabretta leather
Sheep Suede/cabretta leather
Sheep lining leather
3/5 and 4/7
While the market situation is as the above, there are reports of some Ambur based exporters of leather and leather products having concluded some big contracts. However the clear picture of the market will emerge only after the holidays in September. (VMK in Indian Leather, August 2012)
Saturday, August 11, 2012
By Mahesh Bhatt
Famous film maker and human rights activist Mahesh Bhatt fasts daily during Ramdan. He explains why.
On the 14th day of Ramdan, as I drove back home to break my daily fast (Roza), a beep on my cell phone alerted me to an incoming message. This is what the message said: Hello, Mr. Bhatt, I understand through your utterances and writings that you are not a religious man and you do not believe in the efficacy of prayer. But I have now learned that you maintain Roza in the month of Ramdan. Your actions, Mr. Bhatt, bewilder the Hindus and shock the Muslims as well. May I ask why you keep Roza?
This question from a stranger made me smile but since the query was an innocent one I instinctively punched in my response, which was, Islam is a part of my heritage. I was born to a Brahmin Hindu father
and a Shia Dawoodi Bohra Muslim mother. When I was a child my mother would ensure that I fasted for at least one day in the month of Ramadan. I remember her telling me that during the month of Ramadan the Muslims say that the gates of heaven are open. This is the month when Muhammad received his first revelation.
After my mother died six years ago I realized that the only way to keep her alive within me was to fast for every single day in the month of Ramadan.
That evening when the distant Azaan (call to prayer) was heard and the clock announced that the day's fast had come to an end, my parched body welcomed
the first sip of water that I had taken in 14 hours like a desert would welcome rain. As I bit into an overripe date I discovered that at this particular moment I was a part of this collective release which bound me together with millions of people in my country and all over the world with such unnatural force that I experienced a sense of exhilaration like I had never experienced before. And it was then that for the first time I realized what the spirit of Ramadan is really all about.
When so many people together wholeheartedly share a common purpose, they are united in a way that one has to experience to truly comprehend. And the exhilaration comes from the fact that it's not about the individual alone but about all of us, together, doing something so completely. And it is perhaps this feeling of brotherhood that makes fasting in Ramadan such a unique and joyous experience.
In this buy, consume and junk age where one's consciousness is being bombarded by all kinds of pleasure peddlers who market their mouth-watering food and drink on the hour by the hour, it is such a relief to shut the door to them and their wares and protect your body from an overdoes of pleasure. In the month of Ramadan one takes a break from the hedonistic way of life. One gets off the treadmill of constant pleasure seeking and lives a life of austerity and simplicity. This rejuvenates the physical organism and fills one with unusual vigour. As days turn into weeks you begin to realize that the human organism spends too much energy in trying to process excess food intake. The maxim that man is killed by too much food begins to make sense.
In the first few days of Ramadan, when the pangs of hunger gnaw at your insides leaving you to constantly stare at the clock, you suddenly feel as if there is an invisible umbilical cord connecting you to the sea of otherwise faceless people all over the world that often go for days without a square meal. Your apathy and indifference slowly begin to fade away and your heart begins to wake up to the all-pervasive suffering of your fellow human beings
Another thing that makes this Ramadan even more special for me is that my 13 year old daughter Alia has for some strange and unknown reason spontaneously decided to fast along with me. Like you fast for your mother, I fast for you, she said simply after I asked her what prompted this unexpected decision. No wonder a wise man once said, "What you teach you children, you also teach your grand-children." I wonder whether years ago while my mother was shaking me awake in the hush of the morning light and whispering, "Beta, time for Sehri", she knew she was also awakening her future grand-children.
Isn't this at the end of it all what culture is all about?
aaghaz foundation: Estd: 2004
Padhao Aagey Badhao Literacy initiative for Indian Muslims
Padhao Aagey Badhao Literacy initiative for Indian Muslims
H ABDUR RAQEEB
Convenor, National Commitee on Islamic Banking
General Secretary, Indian Centre for Islamic Finance (ICIF)
D-309, Abul Fazl Enclave, Jamia Nagar,New Delhi-110025
Mob: +91 9444075501
Friday, August 10, 2012
The act of the 65-year-old head of the Oak Creek gurdwara, Sadwant Singh Kaleka, who went down fighting the supremacist gunman to save other worshippers, including women and children, is one of great sacrifice. It is rare to find people who live and die for others. We salute him for his exemplary service. He should be honoured posthumously by the U.S. and the Indian government.
V.M. Khaleelur Rahman,
The Hindu dated 9th August 2012