Stories and tales are an extension of life. Language is just a medium of narration. However, each language adds its own nuances and cultural baggage to a story tellers’ tale. At the Urdu Drama Festival that opened in the Capital, some of the best Urdu plays will be put on stage.Presented by Urdu Academy and Delhi Government’s Department of Art, Culture & Languages, the 25th Urdu Drama Festival (under Delhi Celebrates 2013) will run for six days with every evening bringing a new play for the audience. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The six-day festival was inaugurated by noted playwright and critic, Reoti Saran Sharma, in the presence of Prof. Akhtarul Wasey, Vice-Chairman, Urdu Academy, SS Yadav, Secretary, (Art, Culture and Languages), and Commissioner, Food & Civil Supplies, Government of Delhi and Anis Azmi, Secretary, Urdu Academy .The drama festival is dedicated to the literary genius of Krishan Chander, one of the greatest writers born in pre independence India who is revered on both sides of the divide in the Indian subcontinent. The short stories and novels of this prolific Urdu writer, including the much popular Autobiography of a Donkey are a rich treasure. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix‘Plays bring out the best of a literature and like stories and novels carry an essence of the richness of a culture. While stories and plays are but a reflection of human life and emotions, each language adds its own color to a form of theater. Urdu literature has a rich tradition of plays and through a drama festival we hope to stage them for the audience. Through the festival we are also playing tributes to Shri Krishan Chander, the legendary Urdu writer who has brilliantly captured the images of his time in his writings,’ says Anis Azmi, Secretary, Urdu Academy. The festival opened at the Sri Ram Centre with the staging of Parmaatma, a play directed by Ajay Manchanda, adapted for stage by Reoti Saran Sharma. In the upcoming days five more plays will be staged for the audience including Krishan Chander’s classics Darwaze Khol Do to be directed by Sheikh Khairuddin; Ek Qalam Sadak Kinaare to be directed by Rajesh Singh and Hum to Mohabbat Karega directed by Krishan Kant.The other plays that will be staged are Halal Khor, directed by Govind Singh Yadav, adapted by Dr Mumtaz Alam; Maha Laxmi ka Pul, under the direction and adaptation of Rajesh Tiwari.
Daughter and disciple of (Padmashri) Geeta Chandran, Sharanya has been learning Bharatanatyam from the age of four. She presented her formal solo debut performance, the Arangetram at the age of 13.Sharanya is the Vice President of the Natya Vriksha, an organisation aimed at the preservation and promotion of Indian culture and dance. She is an integral part of Natya Vriksha Dance Company as a senior dancer and choreographer. She also assists with cultural management, curating festivals, events and media outreach. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Sharanya is empanelled with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) as a solo artiste and is also nationally graded by Doordarshan. Sharanya has performed to diverse audiences in India and overseas across multiple festivals and forums – both as a soloist and in group choreographies as part of the Natya Vriksha Dance Company.Across the years, Sharanya has performed in several major group productions across India’s best festivals such as the Ananya Dance Festival, Parampara festival of the Brahma Gana Sabha, Chennai, 16th National Festival of Creative Arts, Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, Taj Mahotsav, Sankatmochan Music and Dance festival, Ananda Mahotsav, India International Film Fest, Sharad Poornima Festival, Delhi International Arts Festival, National Choreography Festival and more.
Kolkata: The Kolkata Police has taken an initiative to get lookout notice issued against the absconding persons who are involved in the unauthorised withdrawal of money from various bank accounts.Sources said that there are more than two persons, who are also foreign nationals, involved in the racket. Two Romanian members of the racket have already been arrested by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Kolkata Police.After interrogating the duo, the police have come to know about some more members of the racket and initiated a search for them. According to a senior police officer, the step to get lookout notice issued against them has been taken up so that they cannot escape through any airport or port in the country. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe investigating officers are also taking steps to interrogate another Romanian national who was arrested in May by Delhi Police on similar charges. The person is in Tihar Jail at present. A team of Kolkata Police comprising senior police officers will be questioning him in the jail itself.In such a situation, Sunday night’s incident at Kasba, in which a skimming machine was found in another ATM machine, had led to panic among people. Police suspect involvement of some local youths in this connection.The police have collected the skimming machine and the panel in which camera was fitted. The CCTV footages have shown that the skimming machine was installed just 15 minutes before it was detected by one Soumyabrata Sen. The police have checked all the ATM machines in Kasba area on Monday, to avoid repetition of the incident.
In the 50th year of his much celebrated career, Raghu Rai, full of anticipation, began the search for his latest photographic experiment and the purist found himself behind the lens of a unique camera, in a new space he was excited to explore. And so, Raghu Rai began his journey across India and shot with the 24MP smartphone, from the hills of Kashmir to the coasts of Kanyakumari compiling shots for what is now India’s first coffee table book, shot entirely on a smartphone. From capturing the depth in black and white shots to the fascinating panoramic views to the hidden colours in every nook and corner, he left no stone unturned to capture the real India. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’His constant partner in this entire journey, the smartphone made Raghu Rai encapsulate exactly what he was looking for.Titled, ‘India Through the Eyes of Raghu Rai’, the photographer speaks about his experience shooting it with the powerful smartphone. He said, “It’s quick, everything comes into sharp focus and it’s always ready to shoot.” His book will be the first of its kind.
Do you keep worrying about work even when you are away from office? Planning how to resolve incomplete work tasks can help employees switch off from work and enjoy their evenings, advises a new study.In a study of people’s ability to detach themselves from work, Brandon Smit from Ball State University, Indiana used an online questionnaire to survey 103 employees pursuing 1,127 work goals.Overall, he observed they had more difficulty detaching from work tasks that had been left uncompleted, especially when these were important to them. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’However, one group of employees was encouraged to create plans by writing down where, when, and how they would complete these unfinished tasks.Smit found that they detached themselves from work more effectively than employees who did not create plans.“If you have an important deadline looming on the horizon, for example, your brain will keep nudging you with reminders, which makes it difficult to get a break from work demands,” Smit said. “It seems like we have the ability to ‘turn off’, or at least ‘turn down’ these cognitive processes by planning out where, when, and how goals will be accomplished,” he said. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThis is primarily true for people who already have a difficult time forgetting about work during leisure because their job plays a central role in their life.“For them, a simple change to their work routine like task planning near the end of the workday would likely make a real difference,” Smit said.The study was published in the Journal of Organizational and Occupational Psychology.
Remember those days when children would bury their faces into graphic novels and comic books instead of shaking joysticks in front of desktops? Storytelling through visuals has been an art over the ages and methods of telling a story has evolved from the initial cave paintings to some of the recent forms including graffiti, movies and photographs. An exhibition titled ‘Telling Stories Through Pictures’ is being held at the India Habitat Centre by Girija Jhunjhunwala, Director, Campfire Graphic Novels throughout the month of July from 10am to 6pm. It showcases the popular medium of graphic novels and explores how they can be a useful tool for both entertainment and education. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’ Accompanied by a selection of spectacular art panels, the exhibition takes the viewer through the various aspects of a graphic novel, its evolution, its visual impact and scope. The exhibition tries to explain how a graphic novel can make complex ideas and concepts less daunting through the help of a thoughtful combination of text and images, and contains a step-by-step guide on how a page in a graphic novel is put together.A graphic novel is essentially a form of sequential art. It is a narrative told through a sequence of images accompanied by dialogues and descriptive captions. The combination of visuals and text create endless possibilities of telling and re-telling stories across genres. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix As such, they are not a new medium. Medieval art, Egyptian art, and even cave paintings have used sequences of images to tell a story. While they are generally published in the form of books, reading a graphic novel is an immersive experience similar to that of watching a film. Graphic novels and comic books are essentially the same medium and have the same roots, differing only in tone and content. In contrast to the lightweight, action-oriented content of comic books, a graphic novel offers greater scope for handling mature themes and issues intellectually. In the last few decades, several graphic novels have made the genre popular and have given it the attention that it deserves. Graphic novels are now recognized as a medium for serious storytelling.Teachers and educators have also realised the important role that graphic novels can play in education. Young readers often find bland text boring to read. The sequential image-text combination makes graphic novels a good tool that can supplement text books, as they make the subject easier to understand. In this manner, graphic novels can be used as a fun and entertaining ‘infotainment’ medium to teach various subjects. Graphic novels have even been used to teach complex subjects like Physics and Calculus.With an award-winning catalogue of almost 90 titles, Campfire has been publishing books across the categories of classics, biographies, mythology, History and originals for the last eight years. Campfire had won the best graphic novel of the year at ComicCon India for four years in a row.Some of its most popular titles are Gandhi: My Life is My Message, Steve Jobs: Genius by Design, World War Two: Against the Rising Sun, Draupadi: The Fire-Born Princess, The Jungle Book, and many more. Their aim is to entertain and educate people by creating unique illustrated books which recount stories of human values and arouse curiosity and inspire with tales of great deeds and unforgettable people.
Kolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) will come up with a batch mix plant at Shirakole under Usthi police station area in South 24-Parganas. The Public Works Department (PWD) will be soon handing over the land to the civic body for constructing the plant that has already been identified by the Roads wing of the KMC.”We have already floated the tender. The cost of building the new batch mix plant will be around Rs 2.5 crore. It will be much eco-friendly in comparison to hot mix plants,” said Ratan Dey, Member Mayor-in-Council (Roads) following a meeting held by Mayor Firhad Hakim with the Roads department of the KMC. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe KMC has already installed devices recommended by the West Bengal Pollution Control Board (WBPCB) to reduce pollution of their two hot mix plants situated at Palmer Bazar and Goragacha Road near Taratala. “A joint inspection will be held next week and WBPCB will issue a clearance certificate if the plants are found in fit condition in respect of pollution. If found unfit they will give suggestions on the basis of which necessary upgradation will be done,” Dey said. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseIt may be mentioned that eastern bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) in October 2018 had banned the use of hot mix plants in the city forcing the KMC to down shutters of its two plants — one at Palmer Bazar near Entally and another at Goragacha Road in Taratala. The KMC had sought relaxation for a certain period following which on December 18, it had provided a temporary breather by saying the civic body had to stop using hot mix technology for road repairs within four months. The KMC had formed a Road Advisory Quality and Environment Committee to explore the ways of using environment-friendly material as an alternative of hot mix for road construction and maintenance. The committee has officials from the KMC, state PWD, Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA), Hooghly River Bridge Commissioners (HRBC) and experts from IIT Kharagpur. The committee will be sitting twice in a month and IIT Kharagpur will be playing the role of the technical advisory panel providing suggestions on environment-friendly alternatives of hot mix in the context of the city roads and also on overall improvement and longevity of the roads.
The year 2018 proved quite successful for ‘The Khadi and Village Industries Commission’ (KVIC) as the organisation launched various programmes and missions for the revival of Khadi activities, as well as Village Industries activities in a modest way. All the efforts and hard work paid off quite well and Khadi spread its essence not only across the nation but the whole world. Here is a list of programmes started by the organisation for the development of the country: Also Read – Add new books to your shelf’Honey Mission’ blooms in 2018: Following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s clarion call while introducing Banas Honey project in Banaskantha district of Gujarat, The Khadi and Village Industries Commission, started a new programme named ‘Honey Mission’, which has proved to be a major success. KVIC managed to distribute nearly 55,000 bee-boxes besides creating more than 7,000 new employment under ‘Honey Mission’. Also, it created around 6,000 additional man-days through the fabrication of bee boxes and honey extractors. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveKVIC’s wheels turn the fate of potters: After detailed study about the causes of potters’ plights along with elaborate research on features of pottery industry, its problems, and consequent suggestions and guideline, the KVIC has come up with its appropriate technological development, adaptability by poor potters and implementation through its ‘Kumhaar Sashaktikaran Yojana’, in which apart from providing one electric potter wheels, one set of Pug mill, one set of Blunger and one set of gas-fired kiln to each group of 10 potters in many districts of Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Jharkhand and other states, KVIC is also providing them multi-dimensional approach with an overview on the entire system of input – process – production – management and e-marketing elements. The KVIC is committed to providing them with technological, financial and marketing support so that the potters could lead a happy and healthy life. Charka – KVIC’s commitment to Social Justice: KVIC has embarked upon a mission of installing ‘Charkhas’ in prominent places of India and abroad as a constant reminder of our commitment to ‘social justice’ and people’s ‘self-reliance’ as its tribute to ‘Dharma’. KVIC has also embarked upon distributing ‘charkhas’ to the poor of India, following the spirit of this inheritance of heritage. Besides this, KVIC has also introduced a new initiative of opening exclusive Khadi corners in major malls and supermarkets in the country – to ensure Khadi’s presence at the doorstep. Also, it opened its first-ever ‘Khadi Haat’, set up under the joint aegis of KVIC and New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) at Baba Kharak Singh Marg. Adding another feather to the cap, KVIC decided to sponsor the costumes of upcoming Indian epic biographical film Manikarnika. This would be a step towards the promotion of this signature fabric. Nonagenarian Khadi institution revived in Karnataka, Revival of Sewapuri Ashram, KVIC’s ‘Swachchta Abhiyaan’ – which saved Government’s Rs 153 crore so far were among other initiatives of KVIC. On the global level, KVIC for the first time, organised exclusive Khadi exhibitions in 10 countries on August 15. Enthused by the massive response in those countries, the KVIC again organised exclusive Khadi exhibitions in another 50 countries on October 2, 2018. The signature fabric of India that Gandhiji used as a tool to drive the British away from India caught the show at South Africa on June 7 this year – at the same Pietermaritzburg Railway Station – where he was thrown off a train for refusing to give up his seat in a first class. Khadi also became theme-line on Montenegro National Day celebrations. Moreover, KVIC reduced plastic menace under its project REPLAN (REducingPLAstic in Nature) initiative, increased artisans’ wages by more than 36 percent, launched eco-friendly ‘hawan-samagri’ and gave new lease of lives to villagers in Sunderban Island in form of Gandhian Charkhas and bee-boxes to eke out their livelihood, under its ambitious ‘Employment Generation Programme’. The list of such initiatives and programmes is endless. After a successful 2018, the organisation is all set to achieve higher goals. The main objectives as of now include distributing another 1,00,000 bee-boxes across the nation under ‘Honey Mission’. Also, it will distribute 10,000 electric potter wheels among potters across the nation as well as 5,000 charkhas and 1,000 looms. It is also planning to plant saplings of at least one lakh Moringa trees across the nation. Lastly, KVIC will focus on the implementation of artisan-centric programmes.
Kolkata: A traffic sergeant was allegedly assaulted after he intercepted a bike with two riders, who were not wearing helmets. The incident happened on Sunday evening near Linton Post Office in Beniapukur.According to sources, on Sunday, Year Mahammad Biswas, traffic sergeant of Park Circus traffic guard was on duty on CIT Road. Around 5:15 pm, he noticed a bike with two riders without helmets. When he instructed the bike rider to stop he allegedly drove the bike dangerously and managed to give Biswas a slip. Immediately, the sergeant chased the bike and intercepted it on Hati Bagan Road near Linton Post Office. When Biswas instructed the youth identified as Kartick Prasad Roy to produce his driving license, he allegedly started misbehaving with the sergeant. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataDespite Biswas warned Prasad, he did not stop. On the contrary the youth on the pillion identified as Sebastian John Gomes allegedly pushed Biswas. When he tried to resist Prasad also assaulted him. Seeing a police officer getting assaulted local residents rushed to the spot and detained the duo. Immediately, Beniapukur police station was informed. Later, Biswas with minor injury on his hand was rushed to Calcutta National Medical College and Hospital and the duo was Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in statearrested. Biswas was treated and discharged later. In a separate incident, a youth died and two other were injured after a scooter lost control and fell off Garden Reach Flyover on Sunday night. According to police, the scooter rider identified as Md Arsalan (17) with two of his friends identified as Asif Ali and Md. Imtiaz on the pillion seat violated the traffic norms while they were driving on the Garden Reach flyover. None of them were wearing helmets. Near Paharpur cooling tower Arsalan lost control and rammed in to the guard wall and fell down on the Paharpur Road from approximately from a height of 30 ft. Before the scooter went over the guard wall Ali and Imtiaz had fell off the flyover. The trio was rushed to SSKM Hospital where Arsalan was declared brought dead. Others were treated and discharged later.
Indicative of the growing popularity of Japanese cuisine in India, food exports from the East Asian nation jumped 40 per cent in 2018. Even as it is working with various entities to further bump this up and has bestowed a government-authenticated tag on 36 fine diners. “Last year, Japan reached an agreement with India on the sanitary certificate of fishery products exported from Japan to India. Following this, in 2018, the export of Japanese food from Japan to India increased to about 1.3 billion Japanese yen (about Rs 833 million), which translates to a more than 40 per cent increase compared to 900 million Japanese yen (about Rs 580 million) in 2016,” the country’s Ambassador, Kenji Hiramatsu said. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe Japanese government is currently working on increasing exports of agricultural products and foods to India and is engaged in discussions with Indian government agencies including the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoAFW) among others. “With FSSAI, we signed an MoU on food safety last October at the annual summit meeting, and are currently in discussions on improving the management system of food imports to India. With MoAFW, we are having discussions on exporting Japanese apples and pears to India,” the ambassador said. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveFor Japanese restaurants, he pointed out, “the availability of Japanese ingredients and drinks from Japan are essential. Therefore, in order to promote Japanese food in India, at the same time, we also need to work on the establishment of an ecosystem where Indian outlets can have easy access to Japanese ingredients and drinks. I will keep working on this important task furthermore”. He also pointed out that until last year, the number of certified Japanese Food Supporters, a tag granted by the Japan External Trade Organisation to fine diners, was only one in India, but now, the number has dramatically increased and 36 are certified in India, including 16 which were certified in February. How would he describe the role of food diplomacy in India-Japan ties? “I think we can understand each other’s culture more in depth at the ground level by appreciating both Indian and Japanese food. You can also learn something about Japanese sensitivity and sense of beauty through Japanese cuisine. “Japan is a country with a highly refined food culture, and the Japanese people have traditionally enjoyed a rich variety of food gathered from the mountains as well as the sea. In each of the four seasons, we can enjoy different kinds of agricultural produce and fresh seafood at their best.” “Enjoying Japanese food also means learning about the Japanese people and their culture. Through cultural exchanges including food between Japan and India, I think we can enrich our lives and gain a better understanding of each other’s country,” the ambassador explained. Currently, there are some Japanese restaurants operating in major cities of India, such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai, because of the increasing number of Japanese expats and also the growing awareness of Japanese food.