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    Watch: Sakshi Trolled Dhoni Who Tried To Hide Himself From Fans Under A Blanket

    #Repost @sapnamotibhavnani (@get_repost) ・・・ . A long time ago at a shoot we found ourselves in @thejohnabraham ‘s van so @sakshisingh_r and I directed @mahi7781 to make a video for him. And he did! And how! I am blessed to have spent so many precious moments with this man since he was a boy and feel sometimes it’s my responsibility to let ya’ll glimpse into our simple mad world. Enjoy and laugh all day! Yes I know, I am the luckiest girl and director in the world! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ . . WARNING: THIS IS THE CUTEST THING YOU WILL SEE ALL DECADE! 🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽 #tbt #dhoni #rockstar #captainsaab #fangirlforlife 💃🏼 . . . . . . . . . . . . . #msdhoni #ms #mahi #sakshidhoni #sapnabhavnani #johnabraham #dance #tbthursday #love #cute #breaktheinternet #desi #incredibleindia #cricket #mumbai #bandra #instagood #videooftheday #mensstyle #menshair #celebritynews #bollywood

    A post shared by CricTracker (@crictracker) on

    The former Indian skipper MS Dhoni has a huge fan following, and his fans are not just excited in watching him on the ground but also eager to know everything about his outside world. We believe that Mahi knows pretty well what his fans want and he also shares some moments of his life frequently through social media policies. The good part is that Dhoni’s wife Sakshi also likes to socialize with her husband’s fans and portrays lovely moments of their lives.

    Source: Quora

    How can we forget this video of Dhoni dancing to ‘Desi Boyz.’ Wasn’t it the cutest video of Dhoni?

    #Repost @sapnamotibhavnani (@get_repost) ・・・ . A long time ago at a shoot we found ourselves in @thejohnabraham ‘s van so @sakshisingh_r and I directed @mahi7781 to make a video for him. And he did! And how! I am blessed to have spent so many precious moments with this man since he was a boy and feel sometimes it’s my responsibility to let ya’ll glimpse into our simple mad world. Enjoy and laugh all day! Yes I know, I am the luckiest girl and director in the world! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ . . WARNING: THIS IS THE CUTEST THING YOU WILL SEE ALL DECADE! 🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽🕺🏽 #tbt #dhoni #rockstar #captainsaab #fangirlforlife 💃🏼 . . . . . . . . . . . . . #msdhoni #ms #mahi #sakshidhoni #sapnabhavnani #johnabraham #dance #tbthursday #love #cute #breaktheinternet #desi #incredibleindia #cricket #mumbai #bandra #instagood #videooftheday #mensstyle #menshair #celebritynews #bollywood

    A post shared by CricTracker (@crictracker) on

    They travel together a lot, and in the meantime, they do have their moments of joy too, like this one in which Dhoni is trying to hide, but Sakshi is having a fun time while teasing him:

    #traveldiaries

    A post shared by Sakshi Singh Dhoni (@sakshisingh_r) on

    Dhoni’s expression perfectly sums up every annoyed BF ever! Is it just me or does this remind you of the ‘babe babe’ video?

    To avoid being scrutinized by the public eye on the flight Dhoni and Sakshi had the most innovative way to hide- under a blanket. Right under everyone’s nose, they pulled off the camouflage so well that not a soul looked twice.

    #traveldiaries

    A post shared by Sakshi Singh Dhoni (@sakshisingh_r) on

    As you can watch, he hid under the blanket so that co-passengers can’t recognize him.

    That was a funny yet cute idea!

    However, some fans got curious and started investigating the matter. Assuredly, Mahi and Sakshi’s #TravelDiaries is full of adventures and some hearty laughs.

    So next time if you find someone hiding under the blanket in flight, it may be your chance to meet MSD!

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    80 Million-Year-Old, Dinosaur-Era Shark With 300 Teeth Found Off Portuguese Coast

    The rare frilled shark is considered a “living fossil,” because proof of its existence records back to at least 80 million years ago. This summer, researchers found one alive and thriving off the shore of Portugal, adding yet more clues about the flexibility of this ancient sea creature.

    The male shark with a long, slim, snakelike body was caught at a depth of 701 meters off the sea that measured 1.5 meters in length. The scientists named the creature as Chlamydoselachus anguineus for its gills the frilled order of 300 teeth, neatly lined in 25 rows. The shark has six pair of gills which is frilly edges. The monster is mostly unevolved due to the lack of nutrients available in deep-sea dwellings. A Japanese study of the shark found in Suruga Bay, Japan, unveiled that its diet is 61 percent cephalopods the class to which squids and octopus belong.

    Its name may sound unfitting for a monster that swims the deep seas, but as Mental Floss explains the frilled shark is named after its gills. Pretty much all other sharks have separate gills, but the frilled shark’s first pair of gills stretch all the way across its throat. In total, the shark has six pairs of gills that have “frilly” edges.

    This living fossil has remained unchanged for 80 million years.

    Watch this video which explains the mystery of this living fossil.

    The Portuguese Institute for the Sea and Atmosphere has named it as a “living fossil.” The invention adds to the list of very few sharks recently found in Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.

    It’s doubtful you will ever come face-to-face with a living frilled shark. But if you do, it’s safe to say: Keep as far away as you can, and whatever you do, try to dodge its ferociously powerful jaw.

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    Indian Man Declares Himself As King Of An Unclaimed Strip Of Land Near Egypt

    How would you feel if someone gives you the possibility to be the king or the queen of a selective area? Even if it’s a strip of land, it would still feel pretty cool, right? Hell, it’s a childhood dream for most of us. However, a majority of us have accepted the fact that this dream is most likely to remain unfulfilled.

    Source: giphy.com

    But as it turns out, one of us didn’t give up on this somewhat far-fetched dream and realized something that most of us could never even think of. An Indian man, Suyash Dixit just became the king of a strip of land that falls between Egypt and Sudan. Well, he revealed himself as the king but legally so.   Uncertain? Here is a precise picture of how exactly he survived to pull this feat. Thus, the strip of land that Suyash has revealed himself to be the king of is, in reality, an unclaimed area, i.e., it belongs to no country. The city is called Bir Tawil and is on the South of Egypt’s border and the North of Sudan’s border.

    Source: Wendover Productions

    Now, the problem arises because Egypt follows the 1899 border set by the British government at the time of its colonization; however, Sudan follows the 1902 border as its official boundary. Henceforth, both the countries believe that this piece of land belongs to the other country and so, it is an unclaimed piece of land.

    Source: giphy.com

    If this is the perfect portrayal of your current face expression and mood, then we suggest you have a look at this video to understand it better:

    Coming back to our very own Suyash, he had this all prepared to the T. And much to our delight; he explained it all in a Facebook post. He describes his journey,

    I traveled 319KM (to and fro) in far desert with no roads to claim this unclaimed land of Bir Tawil. It was an epic journey starting from Abu Simbel at 4 am. I took help from a local driver Mustafa for the car and most of the driving. When I told him about the plan first, he thought I am crazy, but then he agreed (yeah I paid him a lot). Suyog and I spent two nights planning a highly optimised route for my travel where we can take the car.

    If you are thinking how easy it is to drive up to that area and claim it as your own, we are going to stop you right there. He demonstrated the dangers involved too,

    Just to tell how dangerous this plan was, the route that I took is under Egyptian military (it is an international border) and is an area of terrorists so military have a “shoot at sight” orders. But, if your bucket list ideas are not scary enough then they are not worth trying! And yes you need permissions to even enter the route that takes to this place. We got on 3 conditions, no photos of military areas (which is almost everything), you be back in the single day and you do not carry valuables. We drove for 6 hours straight in the middle of the desert and barren lands and crossing 1 military base to the location.

    That’s some dedication right there.

    Source: giphy.com

    Now if you are questioning how he claimed the land to be his own, he went old school, “Following the early civilization values and rule, if you want to claim a land, then you need to grow crops on it. I have added a seed and poured some water on it today. It is mine.”

    Source: Suyash Dixit

    He even went ahead got a flag made and hoisted it.

    Source: Suyash Dixit

    And, wait for it, he even got a website for his ‘country’ which he calls ‘Kingdom of Dixit’ and is inviting applications for different posts and citizenship. You can apply for some positions such as Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary, Chief Minister, etc. But not for Prime Minister and the Head of Military because Suyash himself endures both these posts (DUH!).

    We are still a little shocked and maybe a little jealous too. Why don’t we ever get such ideas?

    PS: If you are interested in applying for a post or want to become a citizen (we don’t know how legit this is), you can visit here- https://kingdomofdixit.gov.best/

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    Khal Drogo Partied With Tormund In Real Life & GoT Fans Can’t Get Over The Pictures

    Lives have diminished down since season 7 of GOT ended, and fans have nothing to do but anticipate for the next season which is scheduled only in 2019.

    However, every news related to the show certainly makes us get up from our chairs. We do not want to miss anything, right?

    For instance, Khal Drogo meeting Tormund in real life, a reunion that’s more than perfect!

    Source: Instagram

    Recently, Jason Momoa met the crescent of his life, Khaleesi aka Emila Clarke and we were flooded with sensations.

    Source: Instagram

    now, Khal Drogo Fans can see him partying with the rest of the cast during his visit to London to promote his new Justice League film. 

    Source: Instagram

    As Momao shared picture after picture on his Instagram account, followers continued going crazier with every individual post.

    Source: Instagram

    He also introduced another superhero, Wonder Woman aka Gal Gadot to Emilia Clarke and the three of them look adorable.

    Source: Instagram

    It’s the Drogo/Tormund bromance we never knew we needed.

    Game of Thrones characters are always a family to us.right?

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    200th anniversary of the Gurkhas: fierce, loyal and brave, Britain must thank them for their service!

    This year marks 200 years of Gurkha service to the British Crown. These remarkable soldiers, in their hundreds of thousands, have made a dignified and distinguished contribution to the British Army. In doing so, many have given their lives.

    Pipers of the British Gurkha army at the Landi Khotal on the north-west frontier of India

    It was during the Anglo-Nepal War in 1814 that the Honourable East India Company first encountered enemy soldiers from the Kingdom of Gorkha, in the Himalayan foothills. In the stalemate that ensued, there was an abiding sense of mutual respect and admiration. The British sought a truce that enabled these “Gorkhas”, with their charm and indomitable fighting spirit, to be recruited into militias to serve the “John Company”.

    The Second Regiment to be formed, the Sirmoor Rifles, has just celebrated its bicentennial at the British Camp in Pokhara, not very far from the town of Gorkha, the former capital. Three thousand members of the regimental family took part. The oldest man on parade, Cpl Lalbahadur Gurung, was 101 years old, having enlisted in 2nd Gurkha Rifles in 1940. The Gurkha soldier has come to define the close relationship between the Republic of Nepal and the United Kingdom.

    Three Victoria Cross winners: Hon Lt Agan Singh Rai of the 5th Gurkha’s, Hon Lt Tulbahadur Pun of the 6th Gurkha’s and Hon Lt Ganju Rama

    Every autumn nowadays, the Gullah wallahs – the local recruiters – tour the hillside villages of Nepal to seek young men for the British Gurkha regiments. Typically, 6,000 men will apply to be one of the 200-300 recruits to be taken each year to Catterick Camp in Yorkshire. After a year’s induction training, they will become soldiers in the Brigade of Gurkhas, which comprises about 3 percent of our Army. Although larger numbers of Nepalis will join the Indian Army and the Nepal Army, the British Army offers the career of the first choice for the Gurkha recruits.

    The competition to become a British Gurkha recruit is fierce, and the academic and physical tests are extremely demanding. The few who succeed earn the great honour for their families and their villages. They also enjoy life-changing opportunities: they are guaranteed a minimum of 12 years service in the British Army and some will become sergeants, then officers, and serve for up to 30 years. Like their British counterparts, they will learn the Army’s values and standards, gain invaluable trade skills, and progressively develop their command and leadership capabilities. They will acquire a new family within their chosen regiments and benefit from the opportunity, challenge, sense of achievement and camaraderie offered by the Army.

    Gorkha regiment at the Republic day rehearsal at Rajpath in New Delhi on Jan 17th 2016. 

    None of this is new. For two centuries our Gurkha regiments have given staunch service with exceptional loyalty and valour, and they have been well rewarded. Until 1947 they were based in India for the most part, where they played a decisive role in the Indian Mutiny of 1857 and on the North West Frontier. They also fought in China, Tibet and Malta.

    • Read our obituaries recounting the extraordinary heroism of five Gurkha Victoria Cross winners

    • Lachhiman Gurung, VC

    • Agansing Rai, VC

    • Gaje Ghale, VC

    • Ganju Lama, VC

    • Bhanubhakta Gurung, VC

    Many more Gurkhas were recruited for the two world wars. The Great War called them to the Western Front in France, to Gallipoli and to Mesopotamia. The Second World War saw them in North Africa, in Sicily and in Italy with the Eighth Army, as well as in Singapore and Burma with Field Marshal Slim’s Fourteenth Army, which turned defeat by the Japanese in Singapore into victory in Burma and Malaya. Slim himself was a Gurkha officer.

    After Partition in India in 1947, the Gurkha regiments were divided between the Indian and British Armies. The British regiments (2nd, 6th, 7th and 10th Gurkha Rifles) were employed primarily in the Far East for the next half-century, serving in Malaya throughout the Emergency, in Singapore, in Hong Kong, in Borneo and in Brunei. Gurkha engineer, signals and logistic regiments were raised to complement and support the infantry. More recently, Gurkha regiments have served in the Falklands War, in the Balkans, and in both Gulf wars.

    Operational gallantry has been a hallmark of their service. To date, honours for valour in Gurkha regiments are even between the soldiers and their British officers at 13 Victoria Crosses apiece. In addition Sergeant Dipprasad Pun, a third generation Gurkha won the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross, just short of a VC, in 2010. He single-handedly repelled a major Taliban attack against his checkpoint in Afghanistan. Having expended all his ammunition he despatched the final attacker with the butt of his machine gun.

    Today the regiments of the Brigade of Gurkhas are spread between the British garrison in Brunei and UK. They continue to play a full part in the Army’s operational and peacetime commitments.

    The survivors from those Gurkhas recruited to serve in both World Wars returned to home to Nepal after a few years’ service. Like their British and Commonwealth counterparts, they did so without a pension. As well as experiencing the horrors of war, they had witnessed the opportunities of the modern world. Adjusting to subsistence farming back in their remote villages proved difficult. For some it was impossible. Many faltered and became destitute.

    Soldiers of the First Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles

    When Nepal opened its borders to foreigners in 1955 the plight of these men became apparent to their former British officers. This, coupled with the significant reduction in Gurkha strength following the Borneo campaign, triggered the establishment of The Gurkha Welfare Trust in 1969. From a network of centres across the country the Trust delivers welfare and medical support. Pensions are paid from a charitable fund, which relies heavily on the generosity of the British public. There are still 6,700 veterans or their widows, with an average age of 78, who depend on the welfare pension to live out their later years with dignity. Many of those are veterans of the Second World War who fought in battles from Monte Cassino to Mandalay. They gave their all in our times of need, and we owe them our fullest support.

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    South Africa Buys 750 Tonnes Of India’s Demonetised Notes To Use Them In A Unique Way!

    On 8th November 2016, the country was rocked to its core with a straightforward announcement. The ₹500 and ₹1000 notes were declared invalid and would be replaced by new ₹500 and ₹2000 notes. With one declaration PM Modi created a full cash crisis in India and caused the common man more difficulty than he already had.

    However, according to The Indian Express, the rejected banknotes will now play a vital role in the South African general election of 2019. A deal was discovered between RBI and Western India Plywood (WIP), a Kerela based company to determine the fate of the banknotes. TM Bawa, the general manager of WIP, said,

    Source: The Indian Express

    Shortly after demonetisation was announced, the Reserve Bank based in Thiruvananthapuram approached us. They didn’t how to dispose of the notes. If burnt, it would cause massive environmental damage since the notes are made of special currency paper. We asked them to send us samples. Then our Research & Development wing found a method by which we can use the notes.

    WIP received old notes in the form of briquettes from the RBI. Those were then heated to a high temperature and put into a defibrator which is a refiner which grounds pulp material using stream. This pulp is mixed with wood pulp and used as hardboards. Explaining the process, Bava also added,

    There is a lot of export to bulk buyers in South Africa where it is used as placards in the election campaign.

    Source: The Indian Express

    They regularly export to the Middle East and other parts of Africa as well.

    Bava even says that the hardboards made with money pulp is stronger and has a distinct look. He says that it is a “high-grade pulp.”  He even says that native retail dealers sell it as a “premium product” at higher prices saying that “it is made from notes.”

     

    Well, we are happy that the old notes are at least used in a better way and are not causing any environmental degradation.

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    Watch: Dhoni’s Deadly Moves To Desi Boyz Song Has Left His Wife Sakshi In Splits.

    Mahendra Sing Dhoni has given us endless reasons to be proud of him. Not just with his on-the-field caliber but his off-the-field magic that has won our hearts over a million times. Although it’s been a while since he hung his boots as the Skipper of the Indian cricket team, he always achieves to stay in the headlines.

    Source: Pinterest

    Remember when he engaged in a crawling race with darling daughter, Ziva? Snapchat filters with his daughter? Or the time he was training his dogs? Well, the charmer has it done it again and might I add, in his unique style.

    That’s right. A video of MSD dancing to a song from ‘Desi Boyz’ has aired online, and while he’s got the moves, his wife, Sakshi laughs uncontrollably! 

    If you do not believe me, watch the video Sapna Moti Bhavani, Dhoni’s hair stylist has shared. 

    This is how people reacted to the dance on Twitter.

     

    Cute Isn’t?

    Now, that has got to be an hidden talent of the former skipper.

    Mahi! Why haven’t you show your dancing skills before? Also will we be able to see more in the future?

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    Indigo Assault Video Has Been Made The King Of All Jokes On Twitter

    Hell Yeah, Twitter happens to be the best platform to make or break anyone’s day within seconds. Depending on which side you are on, of course!

    The Indigo incident for example naturally went viral like crazy. You all know what happened.

    Of course, Twitterati had to react to the situation quickly. The first person whose tweet really “took off” was Mr. Rohit Choubey. Well, not at first, initially tried to get it touch with them.

    He poked them to the core.

    Finally, the airlines responded.

    And the request was made by the individual!

    Translation: As soon as he descends

    That was epic! Don’t know how his boss feels about it though.

    And soon, everyone saw the opening to take advantage of the circumstances.

    Air India saw the opportunity and joined hands in trolling Indigo.

    Source: AirIndia

    Although they did delete their tweet, the rest of Twitterati were not so kind.

     

    Indigo has formally apologized for the incident. But their reputation indeed took a hit.

     
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    India is steering a tricky path through US allies and foes in South Asia!

    • India is working with Iran to develop an overland route to Afghanistan.

    • The US, which wants India’s help in Afghanistan, appears to have accepted that India and Iran will have some kind of relationship going forward.

    • India is also trying to build influence around the Indian Ocean.

      A speedboat passes oil docks at the port of Kalantari in the city of Chabahar, 186 miles east of the Strait of Hormuz, January 17, 2012.

    Just days after the first shipment of Indian wheat arrived in the southeastern Iranian port of Chabahar on its way to Afghanistan, Indian officials said they were in talks with Tehran to begin interim operations at the port.

    India’s activity at Chabahar is more than a decade in the making, but the country now finds itself steering between its own rival in Pakistan and an arch US foe in Iran in order to reach Afghanistan, where the Trump administration is eager to see New Delhi offer economic and security assistance.

    India’s and Afghanistan’s foreign ministers heralded the first of seven shipments of 1.1 million metric tons of wheat headed to the latter country.

    “The shipment of wheat is a landmark moment as it will pave the way for operationalization of the Chabahar port as an alternate, reliable and robust connectivity for Afghanistan” and “enhance trade and commerce between the three countries and the wider region,” India’s Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.

    India signed the Chabahar Agreement with Afghanistan and Iran in spring 2016, allowing India to access Afghanistan through the port. India has committed $500 million to develop the port, alongside plans for overland-transit routes, including a railway for which India has said it would supply $400 million worth of steel rails.

    Washington is keen to see India do more to help stabilize Afghanistan, where the Trump administration has recommitted the US to its 16-yearlong war. Earlier this year, Trump appeared to tie India’s trade relationship with the US to its role in Afghanistan, and his administration has withheld hundreds of millions from Pakistan in order to get it to do more to secure the war-torn country.

    India also has its own interest in developing new routes to Afghanistan.

    India is Afghanistan’s top destination for exports, receiving $220 million of the latter country’s $483 million in total trade in 2016, according to The Diplomat. A significant portion of Afghanistan’s manufactured goods have traveled through Karachi in Pakistan on their way to India; however, deteriorating relations with Islamabad have severely crimped that flow.

    Pakistan has had poor relations with India and Afghanistan, and it does not allow those two countries to use its territory for overland trade. Pakistan has also accused India of using Afghanistan as a base from which to undermine Pakistan – through a Pakistani Foreign Office official reportedly said this week that Islamabad does not see India-Afghanistan trade via Iran as “any kind of alliance against us.”

    Developing an overland route through Iran is also a potentially touchy subject with the US.

    President Donald Trump with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a joint news conference at the White House, June 26, 2017.

    New Delhi has framed its engagement with the Chabahar project as more about reaching Afghanistan than about building ties with Iran, and India has in the past cut its oil imports from Iran in response to international sanctions.

    And Washington appears to be assenting to limited cooperation between India and Iran. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during a visit to India in October that the US would not block projects to help Iranians (though he stressed that the US would act against financial benefits reaped by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps).

    Jeff Smith, a South Asia expert at The Heritage Foundation in Washington, told Reuters he had the impression conservative analysts in the US “have accepted” that India and Iran will maintain some kind of relationship.

    “They recognize that for India, Iran is more about a transport corridor to Afghanistan; that it has no interest in advancing Iran’s agenda in the Middle East; and that whatever space India evacuates there will be filled by China,” Smith said.

    Balancing against China in the Indian and Pacific Oceans is an important goal for the US and India, but perhaps more so for India.

    Indian sailors aboard INS Kadmatt arrive for a four-day goodwill visit, aiming to strengthen ties between India and the Philippines, in Manila, October 3, 2017.

    China has in recent years developed a string of bases and ports along the Indian Ocean coast and signed on to infrastructure deals with countries in the region – ranging from Bangladesh to Myanmar to Sri Lanka to Pakistan to Djibouti.

    India appears to be taking a more muscular approach to defending its interests in the region, expanding its weapons purchases – particularly of naval armaments – and investing in its domestic defense industry.

    While India remains wary of Chinese activity along their shared northern border, its attention now appears to be turning to its southern, maritime approaches.

    “This is a tectonic shift in India’s security calculus, that it has to protect its southern flank,” Brahma Chellaney, a strategic-studies professor at the Center for Policy Research, told The New York Times this summer.

    Source: Business Insider!

  • in , ,

    The 8 dying professions of India!

    In India, several professions being passed on within families from one generation to the next have become redundant in 21st Century modern India, thanks to the economic restructuring. The last two decades have completely transformed India’s cities. Traditional industries have been rendered redundant and new technologies have outdone the need for laborious tasks.

    We bring you pictures from the new book, The Lost Generation, by author Nidhi Dugar Kundalia and those by photographer Clare Arni – both of whom have been chronicling “dying professions” of India.

    Scribes of Old Delhi

    Back in the Mughal era, calligraphy was considered a virtuous and pious act. Members of the royal family often learned calligraphy from the finest experts and offered them high positions in their courts. Wasim Ahmed, a scribe, and teacher of Urdu, Persian and Arabic calligraphy, has been practicing the art for over 30 years now. He once inscribed books and made hand-drawn posters and they then went to the printers to be replicated and were sold to people who believed the sacred verses would bring them good luck. But Mr. Ahmed and others like him have long lost the patronage and the benefits that came with calligraphy after the introduction of Urdu font on computers.

    Professional mourners of Rajasthan

    In the Thar desert in the western states of Rajasthan, where women from privileged and upper-caste backgrounds are expected to preserve their dignity by not exhibiting their emotions in front of commoners, the lower-caste rudaalis are called in to mourn for them. They cry out aloud, toss their heads, and wail to the heavens, beating their chests and slapping the ground in front of them. This goes on for 12 days after a death. Over the years, families now prefer sophisticated, quieter funerals with rising literacy rates and migrations. Rudaalis are therefore increasingly losing their relevance.

    Street dentist of Baroda

    Amrit Singh’s humble office is a street shop outside MS Baroda University. There’s no mortar-and-brick structure, no ritzy chairs, no surgical light head. What you find is a few dentures, bottles and a tin box that holds extra dental tools. He makes his patients sit on a bamboo stool boot out any pain from their mouth with his corroded set of pliers. The street dentists in modern India learned their skills mostly from the Hubei community of China, who came looking for work in India in the early 1900s. Post-independence, regulations in dentistry practices were introduced, rendering street dentistry illegal but they continued to thrive in the dark underbelly of the country, tending to those for whom licensed dental services are still unaffordable.

    Genealogist of Haridwar

    After a death, male members in Indian families travel down to Haridwar to cremate their kins by pouring their ashes in the Ganga. The ceremony conducted by the family “panda” – priests who double up as genealogists. They are also in charge of the family register, of updating the family’s genealogical tree with details of marriages, births, and deaths. The reason for their existence has to do with the Hindu belief that the family is everlasting and comprehensive and that each Hindu must “look out” for his ancestors and perform ceremonies for their journey heavenwards and immortalize them by recording their names in the genealogical registers known as “vahis”. Over the years, digitization of their records and increasing scientific worldview are eating into the pandas’ work but those like Mahendra Kumar continue to work.

    Ittarwallah of Hyderabad

    Before they bought a box-sized shop, Syed Abdul Gaffar’s ancestors sold ittars from a wooden box that hung around their necks, walking the streets. They moved about the lanes of the old city that were lined with the homes of nobles and relatives of the Nawabs. The ittarwallahs would be invited in and the women would buy their scented wares – a vial of “raat ki rani”, a flowery scent reminiscent of breathing the warm night air, or jasmine that would lure their husbands to their beds. Mr Gaffar now sells the ittar (perfumes) he makes to the few discerning customers who still have a nose for it. There is an increasing demand for branded synthetic perfumes which are more cost-effective. But he refuses to make them, says it’s immoral.

    Tinning Process, Delhi

    Copper is one of the best metals for conducting heat and was often used in cooking vessels so that the heat spread evenly across the surface of the pot. The metal can, however, react with acidic foods to produce toxins, so in workshops like these, the pots are lined with tin on the inside. This profession is now vanishing due to the availability of cheaper stainless steel vessels.

     

    Woon Son Shoes, Kolkata

    Christopher Francis Lin’s card said that he was an ‘Expert footwear designer and shoemaker’. At one time, each of the shoe molds – or lasts, as they’re called in the trade – were custom made to the shape and size of the customer’s feet. But now, the sizes are standardized. “Then it was good money.”

    The Potter, Duza Siguiera, Goa

    Several members of Duza Siguiera family work together in a small red laterite workshop producing hand-pinched pots. The market has become less as everyone is using plastic and stainless steel despite the fact that it’s good to use terracotta for health.

    (Image source: Clare Arni and Business Insider) 

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    Delhi’s Air Quality Could Improve 90% If Stubble-Burn In Fields Is Stopped!

    Farmers outside India’s capital have started to burn the post-harvest straw from their fields, heralding the onset of north India’s toxic-air season. Stopping the burning of such straw, or stubble, and other biomass could improve air quality in Delhi by 90%, according to a 2016 apportionment study by the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur.

    Stubble burning was banned in 2015 by the National Green Tribunal (NGT), India’s apex court on matters concerning the environment.

    While the NGT asked Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Rajasthan & UP to enforce the ban on agriculture crop-residue burning in 2015 (with fines ranging from Rs 2,500 for landowners, with less than two acres, to Rs 15,000 for farmers with over five acres, per incident of crop burning) the burn continues.

    Farmers have said that removing stubble from farms is expensive, and not economically viable without state support.

    To change that, on October 13, the NGT ordered Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and Haryana to name biomass energy plants and other industries that could use crop residue as fuel and asked these states to ensure farmers got equipment to remove stubble at low or no cost depending on their financial and landowning capacity.

    We storified a thread of tweets put out on October 16, 2017, to tell you how the stubble-burn affects the air over Delhi.

     

    Action Taken Click here to view the action taken on the recommendations.

    (Patil is an analyst with IndiaSpend.)

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    Bengaluru Beats San Francisco To Become City With Best Digital Environment Globally, What Does This Mean?

    Good news for India, and Bengaluru in particular. Bengaluru beats San Francisco to emerge on top in ‘best digital environment’ survey.

    When it comes to a digital environment, business leads have voted India’s Silicon Valley, Bengaluru as the best host among 45 cities global beating San Francisco.

    Source: Flickr

    The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has carried this survey, which examined the views of over 2,600 executives in 45 cities around the world, as well as one-on-one interviews with 15 business leaders.

    While the survey is exhaustive, we bring to you some of the parameters that were studied at by the survey team. The four broad parameters analyzed by the report to rank cities are; digital security, health security, foundation security, and personal security.

    1. Role of the education system and local institutions are playing a vital role.

    Hiring skilled people and financial restrictions are perhaps the two most common problems that many start-ups face. The role of local educational institutions thus becomes very important for these business enterprises. They can bridge the gap by contributing good skilled workers.

    Digital security and superior data analytics are identified as the two most crucial skills needed for transformation, with softer skills such as networking also a top priority.

    2. Central and State governments must work to strengthen the cybersecurity measures.

    For any start-up to grow, it is necessary that they have suitable cyber-security preparations in place.

    Businesses must feel confident enough to operate in that city.

    Source: pixbay

    3. Confidence in the overall digital environment

    While India is disturbed with many problems; poverty, pollution, malnutrition, the optimism and zeal to work towards making India digitally secure is very high.

    This passion joined with the existing governments ‘Digital India’ campaign has worked in its favor in securing this title.

    Source: digital India

    The cities that were covered by this survey: Adelaide, Amsterdam, Antwerp, Bangalore, Bangkok, Barcelona, Beijing, Berlin, Birmingham, Brussels, Brisbane, Chicago, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Dubai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Johannesburg, Kuala Lumpur, London, Madrid, Manila, Marseille, Milan, Melbourne, Mumbai, New Delhi, New York, Osaka, Oslo, Paris, Rome, Perth, San Francisco, Rotterdam, Shanghai, Seoul, Shenzhen, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Tokyo, Taipei and Yokohama.

    It happens to be delighting and prestigious to know that a city from India lays  in a forward position before world’s famous superior cities.

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