Posts Tagged ‘Nagpur’

Ek dost bahut duur se aata hai..

October 4, 2014

Finally, I did go Bhopal yesterday.  The feeling that I could actually meet dear Shams bhai proved stronger than my laziness.

I reached Bhopal station and he came to pick me.  We went his home. We went out.  Visited places – the lakes, Taj-ul-Masajid (Crown of the Mosques), the shaheen (Eagle) of Iqbal, curfew waali maata, various historical structures in Bhopal, many of them in ruins, few maintained.  We rode on his bike on roads.  We had samovar tea.  We had lunch.

Me with Mr. Shams Adanan Alavi.

And we talked, talked, and talked –

of the city, it’s people, it’s structures and monuments, it’s literature, it’s language.  We talked of Maharashtra, it’s politics, the social movements of Maharashtra, and the literary movements thereof.  We talked of Mahatma Phule.  We talked of Sikandar Jahaan Begum.  We talked of Annabhau Sathe and Dr. Ambedkar.  We talked about the Dhamma Chakra Pravartan festival at Deekahsbhoomi, Nagpur.  We talked of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.  We talked of Maratha Seva Sangh.  We talked of Marathi ghazal.  We talked of poetic meter.  And then it was a time to finish the visit and come back!

Later I felt like I talked too much and made him listen all the time.  I had gone there to listen to him.  I noted a few times when he was talking about himself, I myself started talking.  Perhaps, I was so excited..  Perhaps some other time..

I came back.  Today, he posted a poem on his Facebook.. A poem dedicated to me.. “a friend comes from far away..” ek dost bahut door se aata hai.. Never believed someone would dedicate me a poem..

And I am overwhelmed.. almost in tears to read it!

Ek dost bahut duur se aata hai

Dedicated to Ganesh Dhamodkar
نذر گنیش دھاموڈکر

Ek dost bohat door se aata hai
arz-e-baraar٭ ki Khusbhu lata hai
kehta hai Marathi aur Urdu mein Ghazal voh
aur mujhe Chakbast** ka she’r sunaata hai
ab tak rabt tha us se
magar mulaqaat na thi
hoti thee.n baate.n magar shayad milne ki saa’at na thii
voh naujawaa.n jahaaN bhi jaata hai
saath Gahlib ka barqi diivaa.n le jaata hai
Ek dost bohat door se aata hai…
dhyaan se dekhe usne shahr ke dar-o-faseel
taal ke aks meiN nazar aayii use ‘Ambazari jheel’
hai kam-sukhan magar kamaal kar jaata hai
yakdam Taj Bhopali ke baare me.n savaal kar jaata hai
Ek dost bohat door se aata hai…
Uski aankho.n meN kuchh khwaab haiN
khamushi ke pas-e-pusht kaii inqelab haiN
apne kuchh Khwaab mujhe sunaata hai
ham se jab misra mauzoo.n nahi hota
voh jumla bhi ‘beher’ mein keh jaata hai
Ek dost bohat door se aata hai…

                                                                        Shams ‘Adnan’ Alavi

[Arz-e-Baraar=Land of Berar in today’s Maharashtra
٭٭Renowned Urdu poet late Brij Narayan Chakbast
barqi divaa.n=Diwan in file in computer/pen drive/pdf]

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Today’s Menu: Egg paratha

October 5, 2012

I’m not a big foodie, but I feel free to take an off from my routine and check something on the street.  I do  it quite often; I just don’t write about it.  Food is not my forte; I like to have it rather than to write about it.

Egg Paratha Stall at IT Park, Nagpur.

But this place I saw today was really yummy. I had an “egg paratha” here that was quite classy; I haven’t had such a taste in a long while.  It was really something different from the routine noodles, Manchurian, masala dosa, veg pulao, panipuri, sevpuri, pasta, pizza, veg puff, sweet corn, red pasta, chocolate fantasy, etc; and I like anything served with tomato ketchup!

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Again, National Book Fair, Kasturchand Park, Nagpur

September 30, 2012

Some 10 months ago, I had written about the National Book Fair held at Kasturchand Park, Nagpur.  I had bought 11 books—bulky 1800 pages—back then.  I read some of them, and I left a few.  And here comes back the National Book Fair again.  It’s currently being held at the same place.  It has become an integral part of my being in Nagpur and I have been visiting it consistently for 10 years now.  My patterns of reading have changed; the trends of my book-shopping have changed; what has not changed is the same enthusiasm with which I rush myself to the fair as soon as I know of it.

People enjoying going through books at National Book Fair Nagpur.  This fair has become an integral part of reading culture in Nagpur over the years.

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I don’t take much risks. I should!

September 9, 2012

I have heard of people who enclose themselves within a barrel and roll over the Niagara fall.  I would probably not do that; I don’t take much risks.

It was a weekend.  Excitement was in the air; kind of mania.  Nothing special, just a bit of freedom!  I went to Ambazari.  It was flowing over and people were enjoying the free shower!

P080912_16.56

I stayed away, as I usually do, from the brim, watching the people enjoying.  I tried taking photos.  Some boys were diving from the high sidewall on which I was standing.  I wanted to take an “up in the air” shot; I couldn’t exactly catch that moment.  It was somewhere between this:

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A monsoon day, and me!

September 5, 2012

It was my first day back at work after a leave of 5 days; I had some exams and so over the weekend etc.  It was a dull day at work with some tech failure in early hours, so it stretched a little in the evening.  Had to have a little spat to leave the office leaving the work pending, but I cannot sit there too long after hours.  I earn so that I can live my life well, obviously I cannot spend all my time earning.

A tree fallen down due to heavy rain on my way to office.  A tree fallen down due to heavy rain on my way to office.

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Letter to Nagpurpulse for copyright violation

August 20, 2012

Online copyright violation is quite widespread.  Some do it in ignorance of law; the others with just a callous attitude of “no one’s gonna sue you back!”  But is it fair to use someone else’s work as your own?  Wouldn’t it be more appropriate if you just attribute the work to its original creator, not because it is legally mandatory, but because it is their moral right to have an attribution?  It’s an age of Creative Commons.  People are open enough to let others use their work for free; isn’t it the responsibility of the media users to give the attribution at minimum?  It takes nothing, but people don’t even do that little thing!

Nag River reflecting urban polutionA local news site “Nagpurpulse” has used one of my Wikipedia photos on their site without any attribution.  I asked them in a comment to attribute the photo to me; they didn’t.  They didn’t even reply the comment.  I tweeted them; no reply.  Then, I wrote a mail; no reply again!  It has been 15 days now I have gotten no reply from them.  Now, I am free to work in my way.  Though I am not going to play dirty, I have no respect remained for those who “do not care!”, and now I do not need to care about their “online reputation.”

Here, I am releasing the mail to public:

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A visit to Maharajbag, Nagpur

August 1, 2012

It was only 3:30 when I was free and had a lot of time in hand.  I was in Buldi, just around Maharajbag.  Alone; I took this opportunity to visit Maharajbag.  I hadn’t been there in at least the last 4-5 years, except a brief visit last year.

This visit was particularly for photos (though I have avoided “photography restricted” areas).  This place is very much under-represented on net.  No photo in the Wikipedia article; no photos on Flickr, Picasa Web, Panoramio!  I wanted to fill this void for long; found a chance today.

Click on the photo to view the complete album.

Click on the photo for rest of the album. Have a great time!

Gold abloom: Cassia fistula

April 22, 2012

I never knew yellow is my favorite color until I saw amaltas (Cassia fistula) some 8-9 years ago.  It might be Summer of 2004.  A friend—he was three years senior to me—introduced me to these beautiful yellow flowers.  We were students of Ayurvedic medicine and medicinal plants were a part of our syllabus—we often used to discuss about them.  I have always been fascinated with plants and their Latin names since.

The yellow flowers behind the veil of green leaves.

The other day, about a month ago, I was quite enchanted with yellow.  I was in the office and wherever I could see, I was finding just yellow.  There was something yellow everywhere I had never noticed before.  Even the calendar page with a detergent ad had a yellow lemon on it.  I severely yearned to find an amaltas that day.

I wandered all around the area near my former hostel.  I saw many amaltas trees, but not a single one was blooming.  Perhaps, it was too early to expect gold.

I saw this amaltas tree yesterday while coming back from office—very Golden bloom of Cassia fistulanear to my place.  It was after sunlight hours, my camera has no flash, the place was too crowded, and the next day was a Sunday—I postponed my plans for a few hours.  The first thing I did today after getting up was I took my bike and rushed to the place; it would be too crowded after a few hours—it’s a marketplace.  I’m quite happy that I’ve made it.

One thing I want to make clear; this is not a photography post.  These flowers are just lovely and I love them.  I wanted to share them with you all; and preserve their beauty for me if I loss myself somewhere in the future.

Heavenly beautiful mixture of yellow and green.

Random Notes:

1.  I don’t like the Latin name of this beautiful tree.  Even in English, it’s called purging fistula (courtesy Wikipedia), do we need to connect every yellow thing to purging?  And fistula?  Shut up!  Yellow is beautiful.

2.  Sanskrit name for this tree is Aaragwadh (आरग्वध), which can be literally translated as something that kills the diseases.  Its pods are used as mild laxative (another thing to relate with purgation).

3.  Though amaltas is seen frequently here in Nagpur, I had never seen it before coming here.  It is not found around my native place, some 300 km from here.

4.  I noted an interesting point about this tree on a Google group eFloraIndia.  If you try to plant this tree in the middle of your lawns hoping to get a beautiful bloom during the summer, you will meet with a failure.  The dry, hot weather of summer helps this tree to get and maintain this bloom.  Strange!

5.  The tree pictured here is the one peeping out of Shree Ayurved College’s compound.  For the curious ones, a picture of the whole tree with a view of surrounding area is posted here on Panoramio.  Cassia fistula does not grow too big.  It grows up quickly, but remains always a medium-sized tree.

6.  I think I should try to find some more Summer flowers of Nagpur.  The post about Gulmohar (Delonix regia) on of the brighter side was too short.

 

Teenagers killed two students by reckless driving: Shall we expect justice?

March 19, 2012

Saturday evening, around 5 p.m.  ITI (Industrial Training Institute) Nagpur’s Students were going home in groups after college.  A high-speed car came from behind and hit two.  So reckless was the car that it dragged those students for about 50 meter before stopping.  In an attempt to escape, the driver took it reverse and hit another two students before hitting the car on the road divider.  The crash was so intense that one of the tyres of the car burst up at the scene.

Hitvada News: Click to Enlarge

As it turned out, there were four boys in the car, all minors, around 17 years of age.  There was no question of having a driving license.  All these four boys are from super-rich families:  son of a businessman , of a builder, of an education industrialist, and of a renown surgeon.

ITI students are mostly from poor families, coming from outskirts of the city, with a dream to quick-earn a vocational diploma to help their families.  The parents of the two injured students can’t even afford the bills of Intensive Care Units of the private hospital where they were admitted by bystanders.

There is already a lot of meddling going on in the case.  Firstly, they tried to maintain that those boys were not driving the car, but a paid driver.  There also seems to be an ongoing effort to create confusion about the main culprit’s name, apparently to keep his original name off record.  This boy, who was driving the car, was named Sahil in yesterday’s newspaper; today there was a confusion whether he is Sahil or Salil.  One boy from that gang, son of the surgeon, was absconding till the last news came, and his father had switched off his mobile phone.  A simple Google search yesterday showed a twitter account of one of boys; now it shows the account does not exist.  Etc. etc.

Two lives lost.  Two are struggling with life and death in the intensive care units.  There must be the strongest possible punishment, both to the kids and their parents, more to send out a strong signal than to punish this individual act.  But, we already have too much lenient laws for road accidents, and money and take out a way of anything.  We don’t know if there will be any justice ever!

UPDATE (March 21, 2012):  We trust the police and it seems honest in its investigation.  The main accused was denied a bail and was sent to a juvenile observation home yesterday.  The court maintained that justice seen is as important as justice done.

The neglected people of shining India

February 12, 2012

While I’m still waiting for more opinions on my last post (What is God?), I am here with a new post that has been building up in me over the last couple of weeks.

A while ago, I started posting a daily photo on Flickr.  The concept was to get an eye looking for new ideas on a daily basis.  I had a hard time for the first few days to find something new to click.  I had already shared about 100 photos from literally every corner of the city, so it was very difficult to find new places everyday.  Also, one cannot go on a photo-shoot daily, we have our own jobs etc., so I had to find something new at the very same places day to day, and I turned towards people.  After all, we can always find new people on the same streets forever.

He lashes himself with a whipcord in the name of God to earn his living. These people build our roads, and they can't afford warm clothes for the winter.
Sadhu: Victim of a philosophy that handicaps. A boy at the main market in the city.  He should have been in a school.

But what I started as a leisure activity turned out to be a disheartening thing for me.  We are a booming economy.  People are getting salaries that they never believed they would.  Roads are getting poured with more cars and more bikes.  India is shining.  And as I turn my camera on roads, I find people living at the lowest brink of poverty, at the depth of human dignity.  And the socioeconomic system, the religion have deep-sown a philosophy in them to be satisfied in what they are.  They neither aspire something higher, nor are they conscious of what destitute life they are living.  I am standing between the two extremes of India, and I’m awed with those both.

And this family; shall I say anything else?

I wish someone of them grows up to sue me for publishing their pictures in such inhumane state without their consent.

Note:  Hover over the photos for the alt text.  Click on the photos for the respective Flickr page.  All photos are CC-BY-SA.