Blogs by Bipin Sharma
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Perfect blend of Samaritan and devotional touch to Kalka Mahotsav
Greater Noida comes alive with mesmerizing cultural extravaganza by parichowk.com
On the eve of their fifth anniversary, www.parichowk.com…a Gateway of Greater Noida-Yamuna Expressway presented an electrifying cultural extravaganza. The entire event was an astounding spectacle of mesmerizing folk dance performances by young school kids of reputed schools of the city namely Kids Kingdom, Fr Agnel School, Greater Valley, St Joseph’s, Bhartiyam Academy, Ascent International School, Bageshree Music Institute, Kala Srijani Music Institute, Sur-Sadhna Music Institute, Kausalya World School, Ishan Institute and GNIT Girls Institute of Technology. Albeit 15th October evening happened to be Karva Chauth, the entire auditorium was a packed house thanks to kids who inspired their parents to be their guardians cum cheerleaders for such a momentous occasion. Organized at the Ishan Institute of Management & Technology Greater Noida, the event was the entire brainchild of the indefatigable Gajanan Mali, who has perpetually advocated that bonhomie among members of a city is a great growth as well as economy driver.
The compering for the evening was done by the versatile Ashok Srivastava, President of Navratna Jan Kalyan Society Noida. Attended by the glitterati of Noida – Greater Noida notable personalities included Dr D K Garg, Chairman of the Ishan Institute, Noida’s Voice Karunesh Sharma, social worker Suneel Dwivedi, Asit Sanyal, Mansi Mahan, and Dr V P Singh. Speaking on the occasion, Gajanan Mali, the never say never die man with a missionary zeal cheered, “The genesis of this novel concept was launched on Diwali 2006 from Kailash Hospital with the lighting of the lamp by Shantonu Sen, and ever since there’s been no looking back for our remarkable portal. Parichowk.com has since its existence been playing a pivotal role in providing an online platform for sharing and exchange of information, knowledge, views, pleasures and grievances, photos and videos etc. The website owes it popularity to updated information on Authority draw results, voters list, news, messages, events, media gallery, photos, and videos etc. This websites possesses A-Z information online on schools, colleges, industries, hospitals, doctors RWAs, NGOs, Artists, Sports Persons etc The contents of the websites are being created by the visitors under controlled environment. Through this websites awareness campaigns on voter list, voting, corruption, security and civic issues etc are updated from time to time. It allows users to list property for sale purchase and renting and also listing of vacancies and resumes without any cost. On line available wanted section is immensely popular. Its SMS service of providing instant and latest information on Noida – Greater Noida –Yamuna Expressway has become popular.”
The Chief Guest Rakesh Kumar, MD, India Expo Mart and Executive Director, Export Council for Promotion of Handicrafts , Dr D K Garg, Chairman, Ishan Institute of Management & Technology and Shri Aditya Ghildyal, Vice President of Association of Greater Noida Industries lighting the lamp…
The Chief Guest seemed immensely roused with the scintillating dance shows and the unstinting efforts of parichowk.com team. In his speech, he acknowledged how euphoric it meant to be associated with the parichowk.com family.
Fr. Agnel School and GNIT Girls Institute of Technology were adjudged winners in their respective categories following which they were honoured by the judges with a special momento and cash prizes. The other awardees were Krishna Kant Singh (for promotion of culture and social service), Vikrant Bhati of St Josephs School (Sports Talent Award), Sisters Shreya and Medhavi Mangal of Aster Public Schools (Musical Talent Award), Journalist Bipin Sharma (for Special Editorial Features) and Advocate Mukesh Sharma (for Social Service).
Kumaon..Garwal Folk Dance..Fr Agnel School beautiful girls in colorful attires .
The other dynamic force behind this glorious event Aditya Ghildyal shared, “It’s been our honest endeavour to help consolidate bonhomie and camaraderie among people from diverse walks of life. This in a way is instrumental in resolving myriads of grave issues. Another crucial role has been in promoting the upcoming artists of Greater Noida with the help of organizations like LG Electronics, Ishan Institute of Management & Technology, Navratan Jan Kalyan Society, and Advocate Mukesh Kumar
Let’s honour the long deserving Gems of India
The sheer magic of exotic Palms
Besides myriads of significant factors such as latest design architecture, location, accessibility, security provisions, tranquility factor, modern day amenities, and of course, incessant water and power supply, a mere cluster of exotic variety of palm trees in the vicinity has its own distinctive role to play. Simply so because not only do these splendid variety of palms help in providing the much needed quality lease of fresh air, but also do a world of good in sprucing up the overall ambience of the area. This is precisely the reason why most of the visionary builders, real estate developers, hoteliers and business magnates indulge in lavish palm plantation drives at the very onset of their new project launches.
Not only does one get to see palms in the campuses of commercial establishments, hotels, MNCs, but also in residential colonies thanks to the combined efforts of RWAs and local civic authorities who combine their expertise for recreating the ageless glory of palm in their vicinity. Hailed as the “Prince of the Vegetable Garden”, Palms are believed to have a stirring and stimulating effect universally. Prime instance in this regard being the developers, builders and architects who draw a great deal of inspiration from the magnificence of these resplendent trees. Look at the Golf Home Projects of developers, and they will all be flaunting a rich assortment of palms. Most of the prospective buyers too prefer buying houses replete with a rich, verdant cultivation of palms simply because of the enormous levels of positive energy emanating from them. This in turn, is spiritually and mentally uplifting. More significantly, in these stressful and turbulent times, palms by your side play the role of a perfect stress buster. From a state of low, one instantly transcends to a state of cheerfulness and gaiety.
Shares real estate expert Ajit Bajaj, “Properties boasting of a rich green belt command a staggeringly higher price compared to those with relatively less or negligible. A close friend of mine planning to sell his house decided against it when he learnt that the neighbourhood colony park engulfing his house was being decked up with palms and fanciful lights after having been in a decrepit state for years together. A mere wait of six months was worth it, since the same property witnessed an exceptional jump in the aftermath of all the revamp. Incidentally the one common link about the campuses of schools, colleges and various educational institutes all over the country is their astounding green belt comprising an affluent wide ranging variety of palms. Since palms have a diverse range to showcase, there are plenty of options to choose from. Since time immemorial, children have been involved with countless of tree plantation drives in order to consolidate the green belt and the ecology. An absolutely thrilling sight seeing activists, crusaders, government authorities along with local denizens ubiquitously taking to plantation drives since it augments a pollution free era, besides safeguarding all of us against the large looming threat of global warming.”
No better way to conclude than by redefining the Keats ageless parlance, “A tree of palm is a joy for ever”.
India Comes of age
Living on the Edge
The phenomena known Anna Hazare
My Way or the Highway
Significantly, India has for long been in need of a cult figure like Mahatma Gandhi to not only redeem them from the dire levels of corruption, but also to restore their long lost faith on the prevalent system. Thankfully in ‘Anna’, people have rediscovered the same old tenors of Mahatma, who epitomised Non Violence and Satyagraha.
Live and let live
Piilgrims in temple
Ever since huge treasure troves have been unraveled in an ancient Kerala Temple, authorities have evinced a keen desire to take over the mantles of the famous six temples of Delhi. In the process, the authorities have been totally oblivious of the grave loss of livelihood that their wrong act would be causing to numerous families that for long have been dependant upon these temples for their daily bread and butter. The government should keep off from our temples since it would be connote absolute impartiality and inequality mainly because their proposals are meant only for our temples, and do not pertain to any other place of worship affiliated with other religions. All we seek is equality since rule laid down for one is supposed to be a rule for others too, and not the other way around. Certain encroachments in the Temple premises however need to be razed off so as to widen the scope of improvising upon the dilapidated infrastructure and creating more space for pilgrims. ”
Manish Mahalwal, an ardent devotee could not agree more. Says he, “Live and let live is all I can say apropos the current government decision to take over the temples of Delhi. Instead of forming a Shrine Board, the need of the hour is to work in tandem with the existent Temple Management Committees in order to improvise the prevailing infrastructural facilities and privileges to the pilgrims visiting these places of immense mythological and historical significance from all nooks and corners. The government should abstain from indulging in any further controversial antic primarily because it is already engrossed with too much mess and upheaval on its platter. The main focus of the government should be on beautification of these ancient temples rather than taking over their reins.” Temple priest Satish Chandra says, “We don’t wish to politicize the matter, and on the contrary, the only motto and emphasis should be on all round development of the temple for the convenience of the pilgrims. The issue of the government taking over the temple by forming a Shrine Board is preposterous, and we would instead implore authorities to allocate developmental funds for our Temples. I am sure, our collective efforts will yield rich dividends if done and executed with a noble, pious intent.”
My memorable 5200 feet altitude pilgrimage
It finally happened after an extremely long hiatus of 24 years that I got the divine summons from the imperial shrines of Shri Mata Vaishnodevi. Albeit, the desire had been there for long to visit the Divine Goddesses abode, the plan somehow could never fructify. Well this is why they say it’s simply impossible to visit this holy shrine sans the consent and Bulawa (call) of the Goddess herself.
As I boarded the Volvo from the Azad Hind Market near Red Fort on 31st May late evening, I had to really pinch myself to get the feeling sunk in, that I was eventually headed towards one of the most cherished and blessed places of the world. The feeling was simply euphoric!
Unlike the trains that go only till Jammu, the merits of the Volvo lies in its extended service till Katra, the destination from where the holy journey or the ‘Yatra’ commences towards the majestic Bhawan of Mata Vaishnodevi situated at an altitude of 5200 feet. It’s always advisable to be a good trip planner in the sense that one must be aware of the basic details of the venue one is visiting so as to avoid any hassles or unwarranted blues. Prior to undertaking my much awaited pilgrimage to Vaishnodevi, I had done my bit of homework regarding the hotel accommodation and other relevant modalities such as collecting the registration slip of the Yatra from the office of the ‘Shri Mata Vaishnodevi Shrine Board’. I had undertaken the Yatra along with an acquaintance named Sudhir staying in my neighbourhood.
While the Volvo proffers all the pleasure of a chic video coach, I can’t really tag it as a very comfortable journey chiefly because of two reasons. One because you are inept in stretching your legs conveniently like in an A/C Sleeper Bus or a train. Secondly, be it the Volvo or the Inter State Bus services, the drivers are constrained to maintain a certain high speed limit which may or may not go down well with hypertensive beings like me. Being a borderline case of high blood pressure, I would honestly confess that the Volvo journey was a rather breath stopping one for me mainly because even on the steep turns, the driver maintained an alarmingly fast pace. But my critical viewpoint should not rob the Volvo Bus Service of their ‘positives’ which are of course the thrill and privilege of a luxurious journey. It was refreshing to see a robust vigil at the police post, near few kilometers from Katra, where passengers were made to get their bags and baggage’s scanned in order to prevent any untoward terror eventuality. We alighted from the Volvo on reaching Katra, and thus, began the house hunting spree for a good, reasonable budget hotel. With some good bargaining, we were successful in helping ourselves to a good decent place. It was ensued with a much needed bath and a nice ginger tea with biscuits. Though there are no major do’s and don’t while visiting any Mata Temple the world over, what is strictly forbidden is the consumption of liquor, egg or a non vegetarian diet prior to commencing the Yatra, and till its completion.
On reaching the main Entry gate, or the ‘Darshani Darwaza’ as it is popularly referred to, we took some refreshments and informed folks back home that the Yatra was about to begin. We soon landed up at ‘Banganga’, a place of immense mythological significance. After paying our obeisance at this holy place, we reached ‘Charan Paduka’, another place with colossal spiritual importance. As luck would have it, my persisting headache became so excruciatingly intolerable that I was compelled to seek refuge at the earliest possible sanctuary. By Her Majesty’s Divine Grace, I soon came across a 24x7 charitable dispensary where the attending medico expert not only provided me with the requisite antidote, but was gracious enough to offer me a bed for taking a brief rest. I would fall short of words while expressing my whole hearted gratitude towards this noble soul who left no stone unturned in ensuring that I left his clinic in a fully recuperated, rejuvenated shape. The good Samaritan advised me the ill effects of undertaking a long Yatra with empty stomach and sans a good peaceful sleep. Since I had goofed up on both the fronts, a gastric ailment was inevitable, and the least adversity that could have struck me.
However, gracious as I have always been in accepting my follies, I would frankly say that I did a blunder by initiating a long ‘Yatra’ empty stomach and without a good last night sleep. Anyways, all is well that ends well, and with the mitigation of my agonizing pain, I was able to resume my Yatra. It was a revelation to spectacle the boundless adrenaline with countless people hailing from all nooks and corners of the world embark upon this holy Yatra. The amenities and the public service utilities including the washrooms and water coolers are impeccable and have all been overhauled. While the Shrine Board is the official caretaker, Mata’s staunch devotees too have contributed to the infrastructural development of the area in and around the pious Shrine. Depending upon their comfort levels, it is solely the discretion of pilgrims to choose the plain track or the staircase track for making it to the ‘Bhawan’. After covering a distance of 6.5 km long by foot, we reached the famous Adhkuwari Temple and the adjoining Garbh Joon Cave. It is said that this famous pilgrimage of Mata Vaishnodevi must include atleast a solitary visit to the Adhkuwari in the lifetime of the pilgrims. Ironically, the problem at Adhkuwari is the long queue owing to which a substantial percentage of visitors prefer skipping a visit to this place while others prefer visiting this, after visiting the Vaishnodevi Shrine.
From Adhkuwari, there are two pathways leading towards the main Bhawan, one the old route and the other being a relatively recently carved out track. The ongoing full swing work of roofing the holy boulevard with cemented canopies and sturdy sheets is to safeguard the pilgrims from extreme weather conditions like rains, scorching heat and hailstones. The panoramic view of the valley from the top of the mountains is a spectacular sight which plays a pivotal role in invigorating the pilgrims. With chants of Jai Mata Di and Jaikaras all over, the aches and strains simply vanish in thin air. Although the pilgrimage undertaken on foot has its own spiritual significance, it’s unfair to undermine the devotional spirits of pilgrims doing this Yatra on pithoos, ponie, palki, or taking to the helicopter ride owing to their personal health factors. This because any act done to appease the Divine Goddess is an act of devotion, in the eyes of the Universal, Benevolent Mother. With the milestone indicating a distance of barely 500 meters, the majestic Bhawan of Vaishnodevi begins to show itself in absolute heavenly splendour and timeless glory. On reaching the Bhawan located in the folds of the three peaked mountain named Trikuta, there is the flawless and robust check post where visitors are expected to display their Yatra Parchi. The numerous shops proffer ample options to devotees for buying the Prasad, offerings and other souvenirs. The availability of locker chambers and cloak rooms enable visitors to deposit their valuables, leather item goods, shoes and other accessories inside them safely and securely. Once we were through these formalities, we found ourselves in a uniformed queue lined up for our lifetime Darshan of Mata Vaishnodevi. With abated breath, we spent the next few moments in frenetic, yet fervent anticipation of our long treasured ‘tryst with destiny’.
Our golden hour arrived as the clock struck 12 pm midnight, and with our foraying inside the world’s most revered shrines via the newly carved trek. The ancient cave pathway to the Shrine is kept closed except for two to three months in a year, thus implying that visitors have to tread through this elegantly carved lane for making it to the holy cave that houses the Shrine.
No exaggeration, but I was mesmerized and left wholly stunned while gazing at the “Three Pindies’ (rock formations) epitomizing the three different forms of the Goddess namely Maha Saraswati, Maha Kali and Maha Laxmi. The Shrine Board has appreciably taken due pains by planting sign boards at different crucial junctures all over the 13 km long track that lucidly elucidate the existence of Mata Vaishnodevi in the form of three ‘Pindies’. This is primarily to make the first time devotees aware about this veracity. The entire spectacle is such alluring and resplendent that devotees have to be gently shoved in order to facilitate smooth mobility for others in the queue. The place wears a distinctive festive look 24x7 and 365 days a year. There are devotees who have thronging the consecrated place for numerous years, and on a regular consistent basis so much so that the visits to the shrine have become an integral part of their lives. Solely the prerogative of the Divine Goddess whom she chooses and grants the status of a ‘lifetime pilgrim’.
After Vaishnodevi Darshan, I offered my prayers at the ancient Shiv Gufa Temple following which I marched towards Bhairon Ghati. It is said that the wishes get fulfilled if you follow Mata Vaishnodevi Darshan with Bhairon Nath Darshan. Must say the steep, yet safe journey to Bhairon Temple takes quite a toll, especially if the Yatra is being done sans any sojourns like in my case. Normally visitor’s make a brief stop over after visiting the Mata Vaishnodevi Shrine, and Adhkuwari at the various Vishram Sthals (Shelter Sheds. This becomes all the more imperative when you are traveling with your family and kids.
On reaching Bhairon Temple, we had reasons to feel ecstatic since we were able to complete our Yatra in the desired ritualistic way. The alluring Mata’s Bhawan is visible from Bhairon Temple and is indubitably a sight to behold. Few minutes later, we began the return journey. With brief halts in between for refreshments and tea, we finally reached AdhKuwari Temple where we offered our prayers. However, owing to a long waiting line, I missed out visiting the famous ‘Garbh Joon’ cave where Divine Goddess had meditated for nine long months attaining spiritual enlightenment and powers.
We finally reached our hotel in Katra after three hours where we had a good wash ensued by a scrumptious meal. From Katra, we took off to Jammu by bus, and then finally at 2 pm, we boarded a bus to Delhi.
My two day journey to Mata Vaishnodevi Shrine thus came to an end. Kudos to my camera that ensured to perfection that the lifetime moments of this remarkable trip got captured and immortalized in its compact frames for me to cherish them for times to come.
wild life trail......
Over all these years of our marital life, my wife has somewhat perfected the art of giving me ‘shockers’ from time to time. On my end, I have accepted my fate as it comes which is why I tend to take all my wife’s whirlwinds in a positive stride. Kudos to my philosopher comrade Dr Batra who taught me well in advance that married men simply can’t afford to be choosers in life.
Suhaana safar aur yeh mausam haseen
“Bipin come quickly, there’s something pertinent to be conveyed to you, regarding our wild life sojourn to Jim Corbett National Park”, shouted my wife in a raised, but cheerful baritone. Like any sane being, I too thought her to be kidding since it so happened to be April 1st that day. Ready for the table turning session on me, I marched ahead to catch up with my wife. Surprisingly, my wife meant business so much so that the entire itinerary of the program too had been chalked out much to my sheer astonishment.
While I have always cherished family sabbaticals, what cheesed me off gravely was the fact that the forthcoming out station holiday would pose an encumbrance in the way of my usual Navratra’s ritual. A nine day festivity involving a host of special customs, rituals and traditions, Navratra’s indubitably mean the world to me.
Chal Akela Chal Akela Chal Akela Tera Mela Piche Chutha Chal Akela
Since the program had already been finalized, I had to seek a divine exemption from my Goddess with a heavy heart for being inept in playing a vibrant role this Navratra’s. Bestowed with boundless logistics in her armoury, my wife tried comforting me saying, “Lucky you really! It seems your Divine Mother so desires to give you her most cherished Darshan riding atop the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger amidst the breathtaking serenes of Jim Corbett.”Wary of my wife’s unrivalled penchant for emerging triumphant in spats, I had to plainly nod in the affirmative, albeit with unrevealed dissent.
We made the departure from New Delhi in the wee hours of 9th April morning in two different Innova’s. The elderly ones comprising my parents as well as the folks of my brother in law sized up in one vehicle, while the other ferried the 2nd and the 3rd generation power houses of our family including me and my wife.
Mere desh ki dharti, sona ugle, ugle heere moti... mere desh ki dharti
The 240 km long road journey via Gajrola, Moradabad, Kashipur and finally to Ramnagar took us seven hours thanks to brief halt over’s and the pot holed highway roads. The vast forest reserve of Jim Corbett is divided into five different tourism zones in order to facilitate efficient tourism management and smooth mobility for tourists pouring in from all nooks and corners of the globe. Corbett National Park enjoys a strategic location amidst the foothills of the Himalayas, in the recently carved Uttarakhand state.
Neele gagan ke tale, dharti ka pyaar pale
As luck would have it, we had our bookings for Dhikala Forest Zone which is one of the five tourism zone of Jim Corbett, and a good 62 kms from Ramnagar and 51kms from Dhangari entry gate. Fortunately, there are various Forest Rest Houses (FRH) namely Dhikala, Khinnanauli, Sarapduli, Sultan, Kanda and Gairal in the Dhikala zone. However much to our dismay and ignorance, private vehicles have recently been barred from foraying into the forest terrains from Ramnagar in a latest twist of rules, thus implying that those plying to the exotic locales of Jim Corbett by their private vehicles have to simply abandon their vehicles here, and proceed ahead in the open air gypsy safari. Need I say, we too had to adhere to these guidelines. As for the jeep owners, they might demand exorbitant tariffs for their jeeps, there definitely exists the scope for negotiations. Once we had fixed on two jeeps for our voyage into the enticing forest greens, and had the Innova’s parked inside a tourist complex in Ramnagar, we headed towards Dhikala via the Dhangari Entry Gate. Following a few formalities and verifications, we began our glorious journey to the famous Jim Corbett National Park. With hills in the backdrop and enchanting natural greenery, it surely made a sight to behold. The tranquility of the place was another remarkable aspect that kept everyone of us thoroughly allured. The entire biosphere epitomized a picturesque panoramic view replete with astounding components such as the irresistible flora and fauna, innumerable multi hued trees, small rivers, pebbles of diverse colours and size, ingeniously crafted roads, the stillness of the forest reserve coupled with the mellifluous sounds of the forest inhabitants. Dhikala is at the edge of the broad Patli Dun valley and it is at this hub, from where the famous Ramganga flows in through numerous channels. I am reminded of the eternal adage, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” chiefly because zesty travelers to this incredible forest reserve must bear in mind that a whole lot of rules are meant to be followed in case one is really desirous of experiencing a memorable and hassle free trip.
Hariyali aur rasta ...in Jim Corbett
After almost two hours drive, we reached Dhikala Forest Zone, but not before marveling at the nature’s pristinely best. Since we were dying to have a wash in the aftermath of all the whirlwind ‘dust blowing encounters’, we all hit off to the washrooms. Subsequently, we made our way to the sanitized stand alone canteen cum common dining area for scores of travelers to this part of the world. Kids had refreshments with sandwiches, while we helped ourselves to some nice pakoras and tea sufficient to invigorate us from the exhaustive day long journey. We ensued it with a walk to our exquisite rest houses which bore a close semblance to hill station cottages or rest houses. Without any qualms, the forest rest houses were way beyond our preconceived expectations. Since we were in all three families, we took up three different cottages each one of them having a majestic view to spectacle. Albeit we were almost cut off from the rest of the world due to mobile network failure, none had any complaints up their lips simply because there were plethora of other cheering factors to keep us hooked on to the mystic beauty of the place which undoubtedly happens to be a haven for wildlife lovers.
Our trip was made splendid with the open air gypsy and the elephant safari. It’s irrefutably the flora and fauna of Corbett that makes it stand apart. Predominately you have mountains, Sal forests, Sheesham, Dhak, Pipal, Chaurs (grasslands), Khair, Mango Trees, Chir Pine, and small rivers coupled with more than 600 species of birds, trees, bushes, hedges, herbs, bamboos, grasses, climbers and ferns.
Ideal family...first, second and third generation ..together they smile !
Rare sight... at rare place
As for the Fauna in Corbett National Park, there is Royal Bengal Tiger, Leopard, Jungle Cat, Asian Elephant, different variety fishes, various types of Birds like Parrot, Rested Kingfisher, Woodpecker, Vulture, Seagull etc, Hog Deer, Spotted Deer, Barking Deer, Chital, Sambar Deer, Wild Boar, Black Face Monkey, Rhesus Monkey, Wild pig, and Jackal. In Reptiles, there is Indian Crocodile, Gharial, King Cobra, Python etc. Though the key focal attraction for tourists remains on sighting the tigers, one should really not be disappointed in unable to discover one for there are plenty of other wonderful explorations to be unraveled during a wild life tour to Jim Corbett. I would consider myself extremely fortunate for having had the privilege of viewing Tigers in flesh and blood in my maiden tour unlike countless of wild life lovers who remain deprived of having their spectacular view during their entire excursion.
The euphoria that surrounds the place where a tiger gets sighted is a matchless experience when myriads of gypsies march towards the tiger in absolute ecstasy and bated breath. The tourists feel satiated only after they have captured the images of the tiger from different perspectives. Elephant Safari brings us more nearer to comprehending the rigors that this imperial creation of nature chiefly endures for not only its own sustenance, but for helping humans to traverse on forbidden, arduous alleyways. Consumption of non-vegetarian food and alcohol is strictly prohibited inside the park for obvious reasons. Inside the dense forests, one can spot ingeniously designed watchtowers and machans all aimed at facilitating an effective view of the wildlife.For purely infotainment purposes, the lodgers at Dhikala and Bijrani can enjoy films on wildlife in the evenings.
Guess! ...On which animal these " social animals" are ridding?
Every day in Corbett was a revelation for all of us with starling new explorations and findings. And while me and my folks had a rollicking time, I deem it imperative to voice few key facts. Tourists being outsiders must maintain top level discipline when they are foraying into the natural habitat of wild life. Secondly, one should abstain from carrying matchboxes and refrain from smoking or lighting campfires in the forest since accidental fires are known to be the cause of wide scale devastation.
We returned back to New Delhi on 12th April evening after having unearthed a whole range of brilliant facets about wild life. It was positively a sojourn that shall remain etched in my mind and heart for years to come.
My narration shall be no less than an unbaked cake if I fail to proffer a standing ovation to the daily wage staff of the forest reserve who put their life to great perils by treading into the captivating, yet deadly dense forests, all for the mission of our environment and wild life heritage conservation.
We are over the moon
History was written on 2nd April in Mumbai’s famous Wankhede Stadium when Dhoni smashed the ball into the crowds, thus clinching a historic win for his country. Simply put, a 43 day long epoch of intense day and night cricket match watching amidst life’s usual cacophony schedule got concluded on a scintillating dream come true note with the efforts of our cricketers replete with prayers and blessings of the entire nation yielding rich dividends eventually. Apt to utter, “All’s well that ends well”, for God forbids, if the result had been otherwise, the entire nation would have plunged into a comatose state of inconsolable gloom. What more, experts and commentators would have waged an all out slamming war on the same cricketing heroes for all their follies, extra curricular indulgences and host of gratuitous misdemeanors. Not to forget, countless of fans who too would have partaken in the ‘free for all’ lampooning by taking potshots at the home groomed (read pampered) cricketers for spending a great deal of time endorsing the garish gizmos and gadgets of the contemporary world, rather than slogging it out on the practice grounds and training sessions. Facebook, Twitter and Orkuts would have been deluged with innumerable scathing comments on the cricketers and their gaudy lifestyles in the eventuality of an Indian defeat in the final on 2nd April.
Surely nothing succeeds like success, and now that the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 extravaganza has been won by us following our comprehensive six wicket victory in the tense final against Lankans, it’s the ‘Time of the century’, when as a cricket obsessed nation, we have reasons to indulge in an all out revelry which, is by going berserk on roads to celebrate our resounding World Cup Win. Sensing a good political mileage out of all this, politicos too have joined the bandwagon by coming out of their well guarded, well armed closet, and hobnobbing with the masses. This is surely our crowning moment of glory when every Indian is taking pride in being born an Indian.
In the aftermath of this epic conquest, it would be demeaning to say “Dhoni and his boys”, for ‘they’ surely as many would unanimously concur, deserve to be labeled as “Dhoni and his men” for the valor and heroics they have displayed in this mega clash with the Titans of World Cricket. The road to fame has irrefutably been an arduous one since the never say never die ‘Team India’ has had to prove their mettle and prowess at various times and that too, in diverse forms of cricket, be it the Twenty-Twenty, Test Match form of cricket, and more recently the World Cup Championship which is played in the one day format. As luck would have it, India was successful in living up to the great lofty expectations of all their fans and well wishers by winning a majority of the prestigious tournaments, one day and test match series against different rival countries in adverse situations.
Meanwhile coming to brass tacks, let us again bask in the newly found fame that India has finally been crowned World Champions after 28 long years of frenetic wait (almost double the period of the mythological exile of Lord Rama).. that we are the invincible champs ….the best in Cricket as of today, and for next four years in a row…is simply a mind blowing, intoxicating feeling of a lifetime.
Two key things which our cricketers must always bear in mind are to shun ‘complacency’ once and for all while on the playing field, and second is to unswervingly adhere to the core cricketing norms, of which discipline and respect for your counterparts form an integral component. As a big time cricketing aficionado who has literally spent a lifetime watching cricket amidst persistent biting- messing of my fingernails), I would never like to see critics drawing any parallel between us and the once mighty Kangaroos who often made headlines for their sledging and extremely brash behavior. Let ‘D’ of Dhoni for eternity insinuate Discipline and Dignity!
The best thing about the victory against Lankans was how it got accomplished by chasing the mammoth target of 274 instead of being the target setters for their opponents. Simply put, Indians, known to choke in chunk high pressure games like the South Africans, pulled off an incredibly remarkable victory by holding on to their nerves in a game that saw the early exit of Sachin and Sehwag.
We are over the moon and it seems like a dream still!!
Mesmerizing treat of synchronization, resplendence and endless passion at DPSG Kiddofest 2011
DPS Ghaziabad kids....
When Noida came alive with mesmerizing performances and reverberations .
Launched by Shravan Kumar Sharma, the erstwhile District Magistrate of Gautam Budh Nagar in 2008, the website has ever since met with resounding success due to the elaborate, updated information on news, messages, events, media gallery, photos, and videos uploads by the Noida Community. The websites possesses A-Z information about Noida like schools, colleges, industries, hospitals, doctors RWAs, NGOs, Artists, Sports Persons etc. The contents of the websites are being created by the visitors under controlled environment. Through this websites awareness campaigns with regard to voter list, polling, security issues etc were also launched. In a way it is an online social platform for sharing and exchange of information, knowledge, views, pleasures and grievances, photos and videos. It allows users to list property for sale purchase and renting-PG, listing of vacancies and resumes without any cost. The online “available/wanted” section is immensely popular. It’s SMS service of providing instant and latest information on Noida – Greater Noida spells rage in town.
“Such scintillating events and occasions play a pivotal role in promoting musical talents of Noida. The momentous evening was enlivened by Atul Nagpal, Harinandan & Group, Ranu and Rajeev Francis, Vaidehi Goel, Pooja Srivastava, Kala Sagar Dance Institute, Vaishali Kala Kendra , Bhavik Sharma , Rajnikant Group and Orchestra Team”, opines Ashok Srivastava, President Navratan and Adviser of Attachowk.com . Those with noteworthy credentials were bestowed with Attachowk Award of Honour like ‘Rahul Bajaj’ for winning the Silver Medal in Golf in the Asian Games., ‘Arjun Bajpai for being the youngest Indian to scale Mt Everest ., ‘Ashok Srivastava’ for outstanding social service to the Noida residents, ‘Noida Diabetic Forum’ for invaluable health service to Noida Residents, ‘RWA sector 39’ for setting unprecedented benchmarks in service to local residents, ‘Kedar Nath Chakrawarty’ for his impeccable contribution in the field of hospitality.
Throwing more light on the remarkable event, the indefatigable adviser of Attachowk.com Aditya Ghildyal shared, “While Sheetal Verma Singh, Chief Development Officer, Gautam Budh Nagar was the Chief Guest for the function, the other distinguished personalities gracing the occasion included. Dr Mahesh Sharma, Dr V P Singh, Chairman I Business Institute, Benu Sehgal, VP, GIP Mall, R K Sinha, Prabhat Kumar, Founder and Director of Hindustan Music Academy USA. Attachowk.com organized the program with due support from institutions like Vinayak Hospital, I Business Institute and Navratan Jankalyan Society.”
No wonder, a glorious way to hail the meteoric growth of online media channel in the fun frolic city of Noida. And sure enough, the event added another feather in the cap for the ever growing popular Attachowk.com portal. Amen
Minnows no more
Prior to the ICC World Cup 2011 getting underway, fans and cricket lovers all over the globe were convinced that the matches between the giants and the minnows would be one sided, thus enabling them ample breathers for other key errands. Quite naturally the so called ‘one sided matches’ were expected to evoke bare minimum interest, a fact well corroborated by all those empty stands at the spectacularly decked up stadiums replete with state of the art infrastructure. The sole factor of curiosity in these matches being the amassment of the two crucial points for bolstering the final points tally in the respective Groups.
I know that I shall meet my fate
Clearly now, irrespective of what fate awaits the Irish men in the remaining matches of the tournament, not only will their confidence be on cloud nine, but a newly found confidence must be stirring them to smell blood in every match henceforth. Pertinent to modify the famous Neil Armstrong one liner here, “That’s one small step for Ireland, one giant leap for the teams tagged minnows.”
In the aftermath of the recent shock defeat of the English Team, the fans are not only anticipating matches going down to the wires, but smashing of many old standing World Cup records and statistics. Strange enough, our cold war history with Pakistan takes a backseat in context of who finally takes the Cuppa home. What makes me say so is that a substantial percentage of home born aficionados are keen to see the Cup going to a team from the sub-continent, in case India somehow fails to win it.
Amidst all this, the good news is that unlike the olden times, Indian fans are in no way aspiring to contend themselves by India merely handing out a defeat to age old rivals Pakistan. Simply because all they wish and seek is the coveted, glittering World Cup Trophy, and nothing less.
Well for attaining those glorious moments, the Indian team has to not only avoid being complacent, but also watch out for the relatively easy matches against the minnows who are actually Minnows no more!!
The memories that just cease to wither
Fate sometimes takes such a strange turn that we are left totally shattered and shocked for a lifetime. And it is then that we realize our sheer helplessness. I take this opportunity to narrate the tale of my late and ever so endearing childhood mate Sarabjeet Sachdeva whom we all lovingly called ‘Baba’. We ran a mutual admiration society for each other primarily because I was studying in DPS, RK Puram, while he was enrolled in the so called rival institution, the Modern School, Barakhamba Road
On June 12, 1991 morning, Baba, who was then in Class XII, was getting ready to leave home for some work. Like any doting mother, Baba’s mother began pestering him for not leaving the house sans the morning breakfast, but Sarabjeet being the exemplary comrade as he was known amongst his close coterie, left home in a mystic hush on his bike, saying a friend in distress wanted his help. Baba’s mother Raj Sachdeva had been for some reasons best known to her, feeling frenetically anxious, and to make matters worse, she was inept in fathoming the genuine cause behind her sheer turbulence. As for Baba’s flamboyant father, a happy go lucky man, he promptly brushed aside his wife’s gratuitous apprehensions. As luck would have it, Baba’s class XII Board examinations were to be declared the following day, and quite naturally, there was eager anticipation in the family since they had grand plans in pipeline for his further studies. However there was an unspoken sense of mayhem and anxiety in the Sachdeva household as none was wary of what tragic turn of events awaited them.
After rendering his altruistic services, Baba was virtually pleaded upon by his friend Gagan to be on the rider’s seat, something which Baba instantly acceded to.
The following day when the Board examination results were declared, it was Baba’s moment of glory as he had aggregated 92%. While it was celebration time for all, Baba was battling between life and death in the hospital totally oblivious of his outstanding academic accomplishment. As Baba started showing some positive signs of recuperating, God had probably some other designs. On the 24th June night, the oxygen supply being given to Baba was haltered midway due to a sudden power failure in the hospital. Baba’s father panicked to summon the doctors on duty on finding his son gasping for breath, but by the time, anything could be done, it was already too late beyond any redemption.
Baba had finally succumbed after being comatose for a marathon 12 days, thus leaving countless of his well wishers and friends shattered and devastated.
Even on his death bed, one could see Baba smiling his usual self, and seemed to utter, “Please do not cry, grieve or shed any tears today, as God, the creator wishes to have me besides him up above the world so high, more than all you dear folks. Bu I will always miss you.”
As the School Hockey Team Captain, Baba had led his team to some memorable victories in the Inter-School Tournaments. For his heroic efforts, his name used to regularly feature in newspapers. Baba’s mother draws strength from “iron ladies” (as she call them), Neelam Kataria, Chitra Singh and Sandhya Shukla, who too tragically lost their sons in the prime. “At some stage later, I plan to form a “Society for aggrieved parent’s who lost their children in the prime so as to mitigate our endless sorrows and grief”, says Raj.
As for Baba’s father, he poetically muses, “As I lie down for my afternoon siesta and close my eyes, my inward eye opens. I see my son, Sarabjeet before me growing from a child to a young boy, handsome, strong , and resilient -full of promise and hope for the future . He seems to be telling me that life is the greatest gift of the God Almighty, it is worth living, whatever be the circumstances. He was just Seventeen and a half when he left us for his eternal home on 25th June’1991 after being involved in an accident. The very human forces which are supposed to protect lives destroyed a precious life worth more than all the wealth of the world put together. We are totally shattered and heartbroken.
As a special tribute to my best and evergreen pal, I have made it a sort of annual ritual on December 15, which happens to be Baba’s birthday, to be with his parents and share the some of the great and most cherishing memories of a great soul who still manages to inspire us immensely to live life to the fullest.
I end it here by beseeching the Almighty to bless this most noble and adoring of souls.
Lethal Cocktail of cricket, food, booze and unlimited entertainment
With ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 underway from February 19, the cricket obsessed Indians have virtually put everything on the backburner for the entire one and a half month long period. While nothing beats the euphoria for witnessing a live match in a stadium, the experience of enjoying cricket in a restaurant with giant LCD, plasmas amid great discounts and special offers too is no less electrifying. Such is the unrelenting passion for cricket that the die hard game lovers have chartered out ingeniously stunning ways to make the most of this cricketing bonanza phase spanning a period of close to 40 days.
A new emerging trend with advent of time, has that been of watching live matches in an opulent eatery in close semblance to the experience of watching a movie in a multiplex or a hall. The joy is doubled when you watch a live match with friends and so many other like minded onlookers. Added to this, a rollicking ambience replete with scrumptious delicacies and heady cocktails makes the sporting saga all the more remarkable. Every wicket, boundary or six is greeted with thunderous applauds. A lot of corporates have effectually combined their monthly official meets in swish lounge bars and restaurants of the city so as to enable the staff to enjoy a total package of cricket, food, booze, discounts and endless entertainment. Broadly speaking, the world of cricket lovers today is split into three segments, one who enjoy watching live matches in a stadium, the other on their TV sets in their homes, while the third category is of those thronging to lounge bars and eateries for reveling in the live screenings of cricket feasting.
Baljit Issar, an ardent cricket fan points, “The conspicuous edge that an eatery or a lounge bar proffers compared to a stadium or home viewing of matches is not only the comfy lounge coupled with warm hospitality, but also boundless serenity. In simpler tone, when it comes to momentous occasions like World Cup Cricket, sport aficionados are on the lookout of innovative destination’s which are albeit near, yet far away from the usual hubbub of their homes or stadiums in the literary sense. This is when restaurants and lounge bars fit the bill boasting of state of the art infrastructure and ambience. Moreover, the choice of food and delicacies is limited in a stadium coupled with the fact that it’s quite a cumbersome process, making the way to the washrooms. One could thus safely contend that those desirous of a splendid cricketing fiesta, should ideally hit to plush joints and pubs wherein cricket gets aptly combined with great food and drinks amidst astounding ambience.”
In order to woo their guests and for ensuring more footfalls, city restaurants are offering special World Cup Cuisines with great discounts and bonanza offers. Divide NCT Delhi into five zones, south, east, north, west and the central Delhi, and you have every zone bragging of myriads of tantalizing eating out joints.
Beginning with NCT Delhi, the most sought after places during the World Cup are the Ice Lounge (MGF Metropolitan Mall, Saket), Cafe Royce (Defence Colony), Ruby Tuesday (TDI Mall, Rajouri Garden and at M-block Mkt, GK-11), Royal China (Eros Corp. Tower), Spice Market in Saket, Mocha Art House (DLF Promenade Mall, Vasant Kunj), F Grill and Lounge (Metropolitan Mall, Saket), Red Monkey (Defence Colony), Pebble Street (Community Centre, NFC) RDX Resto & Bar (Safdarjung Enclave Market), Atrium Lounge (The Surya, NFC Market), Poison Ivy (Lotus Tower, NFC), Azure Lounge Bar (Claridges, Surajkund), Urban Pind (N Block Market, GK-I), Buzz (MGF Mall, Saket), Chalchitra (M Block Market, GK-II), Man U Restaurant and Bar (Vasant Vihar), Blues Bar (CP), Island Bar (Shangri-La), Moet’s (Defence Colony), Berco’s (Pankaj Arcade, Rani Bagh Commercial Complex, Pitampura), Tapas at Lodhi, Blanco (Khan Market), CIBO (Janpath), Nyx and Onyx (Hotel Ramada Plaza, CP), 1911 Bar (Imperial), Cocoa by Belgique, Purana Villa (Jor Bagh), Chutney (The Metropolitan Hotels), Bellagio (Ashok Vihar-2), Pocket Bar (North Square Mall, Pitampura), Qba (CP), Nile Restaurant & Bar (Ashok Vihar), Wok in the Clouds (Rajouri Garden), United Westend (Punjabi Bagh West), Priviledge Punjab (Rajouri Garden), Red Coral (City Square Mall, Raja Garden), Jaypee Siddharth (Rajinder Nagar), Peppers (Chanakya Lane, Behind Akbar Bhawan, Chanakyapuri), Souza Lobo (M-Block Mkt, GK-11), Double Decker (South Ex -11), 1 Café Bar (Select City Walk), 24/7 Bar (The Lalit, Connaught), NU. Delhi Qba Grill & Bar (Malcha Marg Mkt), Malt & Co. (Hotel Hitlon, Janakpuri), TGI Friday (West Gate Mall, Rajouri Garden), Pirates of the Grill (Vishal Enclave, Rajouri Garden), Man U Restaurant & Bar (Vasant Vihar), Underdoggs Sports Bar and Grill (Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj), Hao Shi Nian Nian (M-Block Mkt, GK-11), The International Diner (M-Block Mkt, GK-1), Fio Country Kitchen and Bar, (Said-Ul- Ajaib, Mehrauli) and so on.
Coming to the fun frolic city of Noida, there are again plethora of options to choose from namely The Sports Bar (GIP Mall), @LINKS (Radisson MBD), Park Plaza (Sector 55), Mosaic (Sector 18), Superstars (Sec-18), My Way or the Highway at Maamouchee (Centre Stage Mall, Sector 18). Ditto holds true for the millennium city Gurgaon where World Cup can be enjoyed at elitist destinations like Howzatt (Hotel Galaxy, Sector 15), Drift (Epicenter at Apparel House, Sector 44), Infusion Kitchen and Lounge (DLF Cyber City), Park Plaza (Sushant Lok-1), Euphoria (Radisson Suites, Sushant Lok-1), Turquoise Cottage (Regent Square Mall, DLF-Phase 2), Bar Zen (Sushant Lok-1, Sector 27), Zodiac (Fortune Select Excalibur, Sector 49), Golfworx (Level 4, Ambience Mall).
Avers Kedarnath Chakrawarty of The Sports Bar, Noida, “A substantial percentage of the city populace prefer watching one day limited over matches in regal restaurants, pubs and bars since it provides them a full package of exhilaration and succulent delicacies replete with mind blowing cocktail options. Technological advancements have played a crucial role in redefining the way people watch and enjoy matches in a restaurant. The lighting is LED while the menu at most places revolves around the cricketing theme. At The Sports Bar, no stone has been left unturned in tabling an ‘absolute winner package’ for our revered guests in the form of specially crafted lip smacking World Cup Cuisines namely ‘Square Cut Mushroom’ and the ‘Man of the Match Chicken’ in the backdrop of a fantabulous stadium type ambience. At the word go, the guests can sense an extraordinary evening coming their way. With splendid food, heady mocktails and cocktails like ‘Power Play’ and ‘Free Hit’ being successfully combined with all possible forms of leisure and entertainment in the form of a mega 47’ wide screen, multiple plasmas showcasing the highly pulsating live sports coverage, visitors are surely left spellbound.”
As far as World Cup Special Cuisines are concerned, every eatery or lounge bar has their distinctive menu which may vary from Chicken Curry to Veg Mezze Platter, Sunheri Macchi, Chicken Tikkas, Sehwag Ki Maa ka Pyaar, Starry Nachos, Tendulkar Ki Pasand, The Dhoni Platter, Barbeque Wings, Kurkure Shrimps, Mushroom cappuccino, Kadhai Chicken, Chicken skewers, Grill Fish Lemon Mustard, Orchard Sour, Goan Prawn Masala, Masters Strokes, Fish Orly and so on. With a lot of dishes having been named after the players, it couldn’t have been more rollicking. Add to this, cocktails like Yorker, Sultan of Swing, Googly and Out Swing.
Kudos to the spirit of the game!!
IT and Outsourcing industry hold the key to Noida’s realty
Noida realty has witnessed an unprecedented boom in the last five years or so, both in the residential and commercial segments. Special thanks to the numerous MNCs, IT, ITeS companies as well as the thriving BPO sector that have played a key role in inspiring real estate developers into carving astounding new age townships cum commercial hubs. It would no exaggeration to term the flourishing city of Noida as the “Silicon Valley” in lieu of all the developments. While the sailing has not been sans its share of hiccups and misses, all is hailed well that ends and results in a positive outcome. Silicon Valley generally considered to have been the center of the dot-com bubble, started from the mid-1990s and collapsed after the NASDAQ stock market began to decline dramatically in April of 2000. During the bubble era, real estate prices reached unprecedented levels. Even after the dot-com crash, Silicon Valley continues to maintain its status as one of the top research and development centers in the world.
The IT scene in Noida is perhaps the most progressive one, and is a hub for global firms outsourcing IT services. Consequent to Software Technology Park (STP), numerous software companies are inclined to establishing a permanent base here. Points Director Marketing, Wegmans IT Park, Shagun Gutpa, “Noida’s evolution as an IT and commercial Hub of the country has had a positive bearing on the demand and prices of Noida and Greater Noida realty. Coming up of STPI center in Noida gave the much needed thrust to growth of software export Industry in the city. This in turn accelerated the overall development of the region, with coming up of world class basic infrastructure, social infrastructure and also creating jobs in the region. Today, Noida houses many IT giants working in niche areas like Communication, IC Design and System Software. What proffers Noida an edge over others is the city’s thrust on technology, innovation coupled with knowledge based industries and services.”
Further, an adequate banking system, commercial banking network supported by a myriads of international financial institutions and insurance companies make matters all the more promising and bright.
Immortal holiday to the 365 day carnival city named Goa
The very thought of retreats to places far away from the city’s maddening hullabaloo is refreshing and soul lifting. And I am certainly no exception to that! While I have been a frequent traveler to exotic locales in and around the country, my recent trip to Goa, the city of golden beaches, would surely go down as the most amazing sabbaticals of my life. The credit for organizing this splendid holiday goes to my wife, indubitably an AHS (ardent holiday seeker). Well, ‘AHS’ here, happens to be my patented phrase for defining exclusive beings like my wi-fe who are always on the look out for opportunities to break the shackles of life’s usual mundane.
The city is split into broadly three parts, the South Goa, North Goa and the Old Goa. The focal point of everyone’s attraction revolves around North Goa mainly due to its popular beaches and tourist spots like Calangute, Baga, Anjuna, Siolim,Morgim, Ashvem, Candolim, Vagator, Arambol, Miramar and Dona Paula. The beaches in South Goa are Agonda, Colva and Palolem. There is so much to unravel in Goa that a short trip of 10-15 days is simply ridiculous to do justice to the marvel that the city holds and deservingly commands. The picturesque Siolim and Mandovi Bridge and the Zuari are a sight to behold, and more especially during the sun set and dawning times of the day.
Inspired by the exuberance of the city and its passionate populace, I couldn’t help giving a new slogan to the city that celebrates life to the hilt every moment:
The city life is rocking, yet serene and peaceful!
Getting into the groove, my father cheered how nature’s best was all integrated in prefect harmony and symphony. The religious tolerance is what entitles Goa to be hailed and acclaimed as a truly cosmopolitan city. No wonder, this is why one comes across so many remarkable ancient heritage temples, churches, chapels and mosques. The tourists have plethora of accommodation options in form of resorts, lodges, inns, guest houses and hotels. The renting culture of two wheelers and four wheelers is incontestably the backbone of any tourist city with Goa epitomizing the perfect instance of the same.
Well as all good things come to an end, so did our unforgettable exhilarating vacation to Goa. With a heavy heart, we bid adieu to a truly dream destination that not only graciously hosted us for ten long memorable days, but also allured us to take an everlasting pledge for making seasonal visits to this rocking locale.
Choosing between Hostel and Day Boarding upbringing
Like the two aspects of the same coin, the world too is divided into broadly two segments when it comes to the core issue of choosing the mode of educational and holistic upbringing of their children. While one set enroll their loved ones in a day boarding school, there are some opting for a residential schools so as to give their children a hostel life nurturing. Incidentally, both ways of schooling have their own set of advantages and disadvantages.
For the convenience of working parents, the concept of extended day school facility came into being where schools facilitate assistance to students for their home assignments, besides organizing games and providing healthy snacks, fruits and milk to them. Says corporate executive Aditya Sharma, “Albeit I never got the chance to be in a hostel, I have resolved to enroll my son in a residential school once he grows up. Life in a hostel ensures a wholesome development for the child and helps transform them into smart, confident and positive minded individuals. With Delhi/NCR boasting of the some of the most magnificent residential schools,
Reach home safely with good tryes
Injuries due to road traffic accidents are a major global problem. Solving this challenge requires concerted prevention efforts. Road accidents are one of the world's largest contributors to injury problems, loss of lives and damage to property. NCT Delhi and NCR towns don’t lag behind as they often make headline news for gruesome road rages and fatalities.
Bad tyres can cost you badly......
Remarks Dr. Sanjay Chaturvedi, of the Society for Help in Acute Road Emergencies (SHARE), “Three ingredients of any world-class city are economic vitality, good roads and public transportation. Road safety is matter of great concern as by 2020, road accidents would be world’s third leading cause of death, behind heart disease and diseases linked to mental illness. Incidentally India is the fourth largest country in vehicular population and third largest accident-prone country in the world. Its time we bring down this number with basic safety measures.” Surely no compromises while adhering to basic safety norms.
Tips concerning Tyres:
Use branded tyres and avoid fakes
In case of bubbling, get wheel alignment and balancing done
Regularly check air pressure
Front tyres are more vital and need to be in good shape
Discard worn out tyres
Double check the screws of the tyres
In case of tubeless tyres, periodic removal of nails or other incisive items
Keep stepni in ok condition
Ideally all four tyres should be of the same brand.
Halt at once in case of a flat tyre
Painting the town red
Parties come about as the most stimulating options for workaholics after long grueling working hours in offices. In today’s stressful lifestyle, one does not really need any occasion for throwing a bash. All one needs is time and a great destination for hosting a rocking party. Come Valentine’s Day on 14 February and denizens have a strong valid for reveling in day long merriment. Noida incidentally has always had the regal legacy of hosting astounding Valentine’s Day parties in town thanks to excellent options like GIP Mall, Centrestagemall Mall, Radisson MBD, Fortune Inn Grazia, and host of wonderful places in sector 18. Unlike the past when Valentine’s was celebrated only on 14 February, the concept has evolved to organizing Valentine’s Eve as well as an exclusive Valentine’s Week. The special Valentine’s Day carnival involves scrumptious menu with tantalizing cocktails-mocktails, mesmerizing ambience in sync with the glorious theme of the Valentine’s, rollicking music, replete with amazing offers to make the moment truly unforgettable.
Shares Pradeep Kumar of Mandarin Trail, “Being a renowned Chinese eatery of the town, we have a crammed house on Valentine’s every year. The special attractions this year comprise a unique menu of appetizers, cocktails, main course and desserts. The place will be decked up with heart shaped balloons and lights. Our channel music will play some memorable Valentine Classics to add a great deal of charm to the whole evening. We will have a candle light ambience.”
As for The Sports Bar (TSB) in GIP which is one of the most happening lounge bar’s of the city, Valentine’s Day happens to be one of the most eagerly awaited day when youngsters, couples and corporates in seek of a great time, throng to the place in great numbers with their loved near and dear ones. The place comes alive with electrifying music belted by the in-house D.Js coupled with exotic recipes. The entire place will wear a Valentine’s look this time complete with breathtaking décor and ambience. The Valentine Special at The Sports Bar includes Charcoal roasted mushroom, Sweet and sour American corn roll, Cheesy chicken nugget and Crunchy honey chicken basket as starter ensued by the Main course which comprises Penne arrabiata, Risotto ala putaneska, Penne in basil, chicken pesto and Wok flash pepper chicken. Strawberry cheese cake and Liquor mud cake constitute the dessert section. As regards the Beverages, special Cocktails on the offing are Blushing Lady, Cupids Martini and Love Dale, while the Mocktail lovers can opt for Stawberry Kiss and Passion Fizz.
The city’s finest and swanky malls, markets and plazas will all be decked up on the occasion of Valentine’s Day. Major eating joints and outlets are introducing extraordinary menus for this special day alongside invigorating recreational events. Restaurants housed in the ultra modern shopping malls have widened the spectrum of party revelers. Noida has today numerous eateries such as Bercos Garden, Ruby Tuesday, Latitude, Geoffrey’s, Punjabi By Nature, Tantra, The Great Kabab Factory, Bamboo Shoots, The Yellow Chilli, Fortune Cookie, Swagath, Sbarro, Super Stars, where the fun frolic crowd love spending their special evening. Exclusive parties are hosted with a variety of exhilarating leisure and entertaining activities coupled with delectable delicacies.
Best of Indian Art extravaganza under one roof
Globally speaking, India Art Summit organized from 20th to 23rd January this year in Pragati Maidan could well go down as one of the most popular and successful art fairs in terms of the total footfalls which were close to a whopping 1,28,000. With visitors from 17 cities in India, and 67 cities from around the world, the fair truly evoked an overwhelming, unbelievable response.
A birds eye view...of exhibition
Time to say yes we ‘can’ wage war against disease named ‘Can’cer
The first thought that crosses the mind as the word ‘cancer’ is uttered is life threatening, and quite rightly so, the disease actually imposes enormous threat to the precious human lives, if not detected or prevented at the very outset. While numerous agendas and awareness campaigns have been organized from time to time, the real onus rests on the common man on the street to fight, and in fact, wage an all time war against this age old deadly disease, known for consuming countless of lives allover the world. In our families too, there is a strong likelihood of some dear member falling prey to cancer at some point or the other. The ironical aspect about us is that we get alarmed only after a tragedy has struck us, and not the other way around. Cancer is undeniably the leading cause of death around the world and if the estimates of WHO are anything to go by, around 84 million people will die of cancer between 2005 and 2015 without intervention. Incidentally, every year on 4 February, WHO supports International Union Against Cancer to promote ways to ease the global burden of cancer. Preventing cancer and raising quality of life for cancer patients are frequent themes. In order to spread concern, awareness, encourage the prevention, detection and treatment about the killer disease Cancer, the concept of celebrating February 4 as “World Cancer Day” (WCD) came into being. The campaign is led by the International Union Against Cancer (UICC) which is a global consortium of more than 350 cancer-fighting organizations from over 100 countries. The strive of WCD is to make cancer a political and social priority through global communications marking, and encouraging policy makers and UICC member organizations. UICC has been coordinating World Cancer Day activities since the past five years, supported by members, partners, the World Health Organization, the International Atomic Energy Agency, and other international bodies. The campaign emphasizes that an astounding 40% of cancers worldwide can be prevented through healthy behaviors such as ensuring a smoke-free environment for children, knowledge of vaccines for virus-related liver and cervical cancers, being physically agile, adhering to a balanced, healthy diet, avoiding obesity as well from over-exposure to sun.
Says surgical oncologist Dr B Niranjan Naik of Dharamshila Cancer Foundation and Research Centre, Delhi, “Cancers are lifestyle diseases with 90 percent cases happening due to environmental factors and 10 percent due to genetics. Cancer is a disease of failure of regulation of tissue growth. One-third of all cancer cases are preventable and prevention is undeniably, the most cost-effective long-term strategy for cancer control. Tobacco is the single largest preventable cause of cancer in the world today as it causes 80 percent of all lung as well as oral cancer deaths. We have to follow and ‘EARN’ the four pillars of health. ‘EARN’ here signifies exercising regularly, keeping a positive ‘attitude’, having adequate rest, and maintaining a nutritious diet. Dietary modification is another significant approach to cancer control. Early detection of cancer immensely increases the chances for successful treatment. There are two key components of early detection of cancer, one education to promote early diagnosis and the other, screening. “
Conquer depression holistically once and for all
My close friend is in severe depression, his sister is undergoing treatment for depression at the city hospital, Rohit’s wife is suffering from depression and has been on anti depressives since past one year. No wonder, umpteen times in life, we would have come across this utterance, but sardonically enough, would have hardly spared a holistic thought towards the root cause of depression and consequent remedies for coping with this acute ailment. In simpler lingo, “Depression” is nothing, but a state of mind when one experiences unusually low mood phases or mood swings. A depressed person is commonly found to be experiencing feelings such as melancholy, hollowness, hopelessness and helplessness. According to experts, when one has depression, there’s nothing more pertinent than getting effective and instant treatment. Depression may stem due to death of a close family member, divorce, huge monetary loss business, recent loss of a good job, unable to meet life’s stringent deadlines and challenges, prolonged illness and the litany of causes is just endless. Significantly, people, over the years, have started resorting to holistic ways, besides the usual allopathic mode of treatment, for redeeming their loved ones from nearly gloomy depressed and desperate situations. A depressive state involves all three viz. body, mood, and thought process. It is normally difficult to come out of a depressive state sans proper treatment. Treatments such as antidepressant medications and psychotherapy can reduce and at times, eliminate the symptoms of depression. Sometime ago, I spoke to a renowned Astro-scientist and holistic heeler Dr Rakesh Khera who gave me a great deal of insight into the finer facets of Holistic Health. It was extremely informative to learn from him that in Holistic Health, stress is on knowing the patient who has the disease rather than knowing the disease that patient has. Dr Khera is convinced that that a substantial populace is unaware about Holistic Health and why modern medicine (allopathic treatment) lags behind in certain key aspects. Quiz him if Holistic Health rejects Western system of medicine in toto, and he is quick to point how in the case of infectious diseases, nutritional and hormonal deficiencies, bodily defects that need surgical intervention, it follows the western system . According to him, a “Long relaxed conversation” has simply no Substitute. Holistic Health means a feeling of wellness and providing a way of life that prevents occurrence of acute ailments.
As I trail back a few years, I recall how my mother’s daily custom of lighting a desi ghee lamp at our home not only made our lives much more balanced and meaningful, but also proffered us enormous joy and peace. Besides, it enabled me to keep off from bad vices, and more notably at times, when I was bedridden, the mere sight of a small ghee lamp revivified me. Divert your thoughts to the unique ‘Festival of lights’, Diwali, which people celebrate all over the world with full pomp, festivity and spirit. The mere thought of Diwali festival is enough to brace us up and stimulate our mood, for the ‘Diwali light’ akin to the radiance of ‘Akhand Jyot’, not only shuns darkness, but also enables us to envision life sagaciously and astutely.
If prayers are sincere, rewards and boons from the Almighty are bound to be bestowed on us
Spirituality in the literary sense connotes embarking on a voyage that transcends one into an altogether different world or, a new planet far away from the maddening world. Simply put, it uplifts you both mentally and spiritually into much more loftier echelons of peace, tranquility and fore vision about life. Being spiritually and ritualistically inclined proffers divine ecstasy to those traversing these blissful boulevards. You could be excused for deeming it smooth sailing, but, the fact of the matter remains that treading on the spiritual alleyways is no cakewalk, simply because it needs lifetime’s grit and fortitude for being eligible to taking to the arduous trail of spiritualism and the mystic world of theology. It is a common phenomenon that we mostly resort to mysticism in distressful and traumatic times when nothing seems in sight, compared to when the times are hale, hearty and rosy. Nonetheless irrespective, of what draws you to spirituality, what really matters eventually is the “nobleness of your devotion” with which you invoke the ‘Divine Power’ that controls the Universe. Based upon your devotion and more prominently, the ‘Statement of Purpose’ behind all our prayers is what rouses the Divine Power towards us. In simpler lingo, it is the blend of devotional spirit combined with the righteousness behind our prayers that clinches it in the long run for the devotees or the seekers in the court and the royal bastions of the “Supreme Controller” of this Universe.
I feel it extremely imperative to share that merely attaining ‘divine refuge’ in the citadels of the Ultimate Power that beholds everything and anything that concerns the world around us, is a divine blessing in itself, that gets showered on the few lucky, chosen souls. The punch line here is that we need to cherish and rejoice on being accepted in the divine refuge that lies at the footsteps of the ‘Super Power’. This is also the launching pad for formally getting into the world of spirituality and thus presages a moment to exult and celebrate. Once this beginning is made, there’s simply no looking back for those wishing to have a celestial communion with the Omnipotent. Spirituality subsequently transports you to the next realm which is being ritualistic wherein, you indulge in daily rituals that could range from offering prayers, flowers, lighting a lamp to adorning your place of worship.
As a spiritually and ritualistically inclined being, I accord due reverence to all religions, faiths, customs and practices because I realize that eventually the power that binds all diverse religions, faiths and practices is one common “Power or Supremacy” whom we refer to as God, Jesus, Ram, Rahim or Allah as per our respective faith orientations.
Before penning down, it’s obligatory on my part to educate and emphasize about the importance of being firm and stanch in one’s respective faith for if the faith is unswerving, then any magnitude of problem would simply get deflected back in the direction it came, implying patently that it would have no or negligible impact on such steadfast upholders of faith and conviction.
Holistics before academics
Another important aspect which needs to be put on the dais is how the spectrum of holistic learning extends homogeneously and evenly to all sections and strata of the society. This, for the simple reason that everyone needs to adhere to the basic tenets of holistic restraint, irrespective of one’s social status or background. Joining in to echo her precious thoughts on the relevance of holistic education in today’s life, Garima Sharma, eminent Early Childhood Education expert remarks, “The curriculum being imparted at various levels of education process needs to integrate holistic component with academics in order to ensure the full round development of students. Who says, it’s only the under privileged class, or the people from economically weaker sections of the society that need to be imparted the finer nuances of holistic erudition primarily because students studying in hi-end schools too need vital holistic lessons on a regular basis so as to keep off from inculcating unwarranted vices. Every now and then, in utter disbelief, we keep reading in papers, or view on national TV, youngsters from taking to crimes like thefts, kidnapping for ransom, murders, being committed by youngsters hailing from respectable and affluent families. Besides the aforesaid crimes, such youths also make prime time headlines for being involved in felonies like heavy indulgence in drug abuse during rave parties, road rages in the aftermath of drunken driving, wreaking havoc on innocent party revelers in an inebriated state, and more recent of all, circulating the MMS of their female friends in compromising positions. Isn’t this so shocking and detestable? Well, the million dollar question is to introspect and explore ways for curbing all this. No rocket science to conclude that somewhere due to a break in the usual monotony, it has lead to young minds going haywire and berserk in life, only to further result in dire consequences.
Primary student immersed in Prayer...
The solution is simple as all educationists and academicians need to do, is to ensure regular lessons of holistic learning throughout the student life.” Holistic touch to modern day education incorporates fixed schedule for meditation sessions as well as other interactive elements that do a world of good to educate young tender minds about the distinction between good and evil. Moreover, it apprises them about the colossal significance of possessing good virtues and morals for accomplishing greater heights in times to come. With a well defined objective of inculcating strong values for traditions and culture, schools and various educational institutes organize special carnivals for celebrating momentous ancient festivals. Behind every such learning practice or ritual, the endeavour is to instill firm and everlasting assets of ethical and integrity among the children populace. Since there is equal probability of kids falling prey to any of the existent or the modern day vices, the need to underline the importance of all such key programs increases all the more. In the literary sense, a holistic approach integrates all three viz. mind, body and soul, thereby helping attain a state of total biological equilibrium, where the emotional, sensory, and spiritual elements get harmoniously balanced. It helps in making children peaceful, more focused and vibrant. Meditation is panacea for all physical, emotional and mental ailments, and this is why schools all over the country nowadays have inculcated ‘meditation’ as part of their daily curriculum. Meditation does wonders to the overall development of a child, and is indubitably, one of the key components of holistic approach. Elucidates Santosh Kalyani, CEO of the Character Development Initiative, “The main aim is to ensure holistically sound batches of students every year. If youngsters are spiritually inclined, they are bound to perform well in academics. However, the same rule does not hold true with brilliant students, since they too stand prone to committing misdeeds and countless number of gratuitous antics. If bright students bring laurels to their schools, honestly speaking, one bad deed by a student brings loads of disrepute to the legacy of the school or institution to which he or she belongs. The mere reference of “misdeed” or “misdemeanor”, and it instantly correlates us to the ever so crucial “upbringing factor” which makes it easy to conclude that due to gross neglect during the initial formative years of development, a student went astray.
Awful to see a substantial chunk of youngsters serving jail terms. Albeit any city would boast of numerous hi-end schools these days replete with state of the art infrastructure, opulent amenities, highly meritorious teaching and administrative staff, they might still be considered ‘lacking’ or ‘incomplete’, if they are in inept in proffering due connotation to holistic education. Simply implying the sheer pertinence of holistic touch to modern day education.” “Character Development Initiative” or simply “CDI” is an intervention specifically developed, to empower students and youths in demanding situations to maintain their composure and face up to life, when they encounter challenges or situations which demand strength of character. It is an interactive process of training and learning, which enables the beneficiaries to acquire knowledge, and to develop attitudes and skills which support the adoption of healthy behaviours. Cheers Nidhi Sirohi, principal Kothari International School (KIS), “It’s been four years since KIS came into being. The USP of our institution is the perfect integration of curriculum with holistic development and nourishment. We epitomize to make learning meaningful, collaborative and immensely enjoyable. KIS is a modern day boarding school fully air-conditioned and furnished with state of the art facilities and services to the students to provide holistic education and enable full development of their personality. It aims to provide a happy and supportive environment that nurtures the individual abilities of the children; allows them to think independently and innovatively, take their own initiative and actively participate in the learning process. Being a firm believer of holistic education, I lay immense emphasis on all round development of a student, and ensure that he or she inherits and integrates the best of human values and cultural traditions, besides being good with academics.” No doubts really, that educating children the holistic way would ensure two key purposes, firstly good academic results, and secondly, help curtail the growing crime rate among youngistan populace of the country.
Weather the winter chill by taking sabbaticals
January 31, 2011 You beat the heat in summers by taking a dip in the pool, or guzzling a glass of chilled beer. Likewise, the best way to weather the chill of December-January-February is by taking a much needed sabbatical, away from the maddening commotion of the city’s usual hubbub. Well, an unforgettable holiday to rollicking destinations and unconventional retreats.
Couple united in nature!
Relaxation in nature...
Creations in sand at a beach by the creative children
Mother-son ready for water games...at Goa beach
When all roads lead to Kalkaji Temple
Braving the breezy chill of January month, countless devotees congregated on the holy premises of the famous Kalkaji Temple to witness unprecedented magic of electrifying devotional musical extravaganza. The occasion being the eighth successive Bhavya Bhagwati Jagran celebrated every year on 25th January in Kalkaji Temple. The grandeur of the entire carnival was a spectacular once in a lifetime sight replete with renowned performers, opulent stages, diverse range of aromatic flowers, robust security arrangements and more significantly arrangement of scrumptious Bhandara Prasad ensued by free distribution of pious merchandise.
Kalkaji Temple all decked up for the big Jagran Night
South Delhi is abuzz with inconceivable festivity as ardent devotees of the Divine Goddess are captivatingly engrossed in giving the eighth successive Bhavya Bhagwati Jagran a grand, ceremonial touch. Come January every year, and one see the majestic Temple of Goddess Kali all decked up for the divinely 25th Jagran night. The men behind this devotional show of resplendence at its pristinely best are the obsequious and energetic team of Shree Kalkaji Sajja Sewadar Mitra Mandal who are well known for their extravagant celebrations. As many as eleven famed singers will sing enchanting bhente (soul soothing devotional recitations) in praise and honour of the Holy Mother. While the year 2010 saw the Jagran festivity getting extended to thirty six hours instead of the customary twelve hours, this year’s Jagran will be a one day affair commencing from 9 am in the morning of 25th, and culminating on the morning of 26th at 6 am. It’s a sight to behold as passionate devotees go all out to ensure the total success of the grand carnival. What gives the 25th January Jagran in the premises of Kalkaji Temple a distinctive touch is the number of renowned singers performing on one stage replete with astounding adorning of pandals coupled with the glittering, sweet-smelling flower garlands. Surely a remarkable way for appeasing the Holy Mother.
Renowned Punjbai singer Gurdas Mann is foraying into devotional singing after24 long years, and quite aptly, he chose the forum of 25th January Kalkaji Temple Jagran as the best way to do that. A lavish Bhandara will follow with the distribution of Prasad at the end.
Narendra Chanchal....Maata's voice..
Jagran and Narender Chanchal have become synonymous over the years. Ever since Chanchal took to devotional singing, the concept of Jagrans and Chowkis has acquired an altogether novel dimension. By the grace of Divine Goddess, Chanchal is said to have revolutionized the concept of enthralling people with his heart rendering and soulful ‘Mata ki Bhente’ recitations. For Chanchal who has been a regular at Kalkaji Temple, the 25th January Jagran holds colossal relevance. Remarks the midnight singer as he is popularly referred to, “Being one of the ancient most Shaktipithas, the dignity of Kalkaji Temple powers the devotees to return here time and again. No one with a pure heart returns empty handed from her portals. The winter chill is no deterrent for the massive strength of devotees coming from far flung places to attend the 25th January Night Jagran. The devotees indulge in great festive revelry, and as the night progresses, so does the exuberance and buoyancy of the ever deluging crowds.”
DEVOTIONAL SINGER PARVEEN JOHAR
One person who deserves special mention is Anuj Mittal, president of Shree Kalkaji Sajja Sewadaar Mitra Mandal who has been organizing these mega Jagran Nights with his indefatigable team of devotees. “The best part about the January Jagran is its being celebrated in the premises of the ancient and famous Shree Kalkaji Temple. The whole Temple is transformed into one mammoth festivity destination during the Jagran. People haling from different caste, creeds and regions congregate here. This year will see the revival of traditional hymns, also known as “Pakke Bhajan” in reverence of the Supreme Mother. About 501 devotees will partake in the ‘Durga Stuti Paath” wherein all of them will individually light their oil lamps alongside their Kalash. The opulent Jagran fiesta presents a mesmerizing sight with devotees, dressed in the best of their traditional attires, pouring in from all parts of the country. It is believed that the true devotees who remain awake during the Jagran night are granted boons and rewards by the Divine Mother.”
Kalkaji Temple- A Devotional Paradise in the capital city..
Kalkaji Temple is indubitably one of the most famous, overwhelming and frequented Devi Maa’s Temple the world over. Being one of the ancient most Shaktipithas, the Temple is abode of Divine Goddess “Kalka” or “Kali”, who is an incarnation of Goddess Durga. Situated atop a small hill, the temple presents a mesmerizing sight with devotees, dressed in the best of their traditional attires, pouring in from all parts of the country, with dazzling puja thalis and other ritualistic accessories. On special occasions, owing to an unprecedented large number of visitors to the temple, the queue to the Bhawan is bizarrely long and scary. While the long queue at first, does send shivers down the spine for visitors keen on seeking early Darshan of Maa Kalka, visitors are advised to wait for their turn by following the queue. Kalkaji Temple, a Shakti shrine is legendary and a rich heritage legacy of the city that is open to countless devotees thronging on a daily basis as well as during exclusive religious festivities. Beautiful light diyas adorn the temple, and one can see women, men, children and old populace among the endless queue of devotees. With Jaikaras being chanted all over, it is an enchanting and enthralling experience for the onlookers. As far as various rituals are concerned, the most momentous ones are ‘Mata Snanam’ with Milk and Gangajal ensued by morning and evening Aarti. Besides, it is a spectacular sight to behold in the night, when daily devouts to the temple participate in the breathtaking “Sajja Ritual”, which happens to be the final ritual for the day when Divine Mother goes off to her slumber. Devouts sing soul rendering ‘Bhentein’ in praise of Maa Kalka, while others simply clap and dance for registering their reverence in Mother’s Shree Charan. The ritualistic (Puja Archana) is performed on a monthly basis by the 1000 strong family clan of Brahmins. Folklore is replete with numerous tales of this exquisitely divinely Temple. There’s a great deal of significance attached to devotees observing a continuous 40 day “Chalia ritual”. It is widely accepted belief that those who are able to devotionally perform this ritual with the essential prerequisites are rewarded by Maa Kalka with their long treasured wishes and desires. Carved out of marble and black pumice boulders, Kalkaji Temple has 12 ingeniously designed Dwars (doors) from where devotees can gain access to the majestic Bhawan for seeking Goddess Kalka’s Darshan. More precisely, it is this structure that houses the most revered Goddess Kalka in the ‘Pindi’ form. Presently, the Temple is undergoing a major revamp and promises to wear a stunning look shortly. Additionally, there are numerous other Dharamshalas alongside shopping stalls in and around the temple complex that enable countless number of visitors to pick and buy the wide ranging variety of Puja Samagari. The temple, centrally located in the heart of south Delhi is in close proximity to posh colonies of Kalkaji, Okhla, New Friends Colony, East of Kailash and city’s industrial hub, Okhla.
The recently renovated area in and around the commercial hub Nehru Place has done a world of good to the Temple, as it has proffered a more elegant and picturesque touch to the overall ambience with tall, lofty skyscrapers and widely metalled roads all leading to the Temple. Added to this, there is the ornamental and craftily landscaped Aastha Kunj Park in the close vicinity that further goes to lend a majestic and tranquil touch to the surrounding environs. Albeit, there are innumerable temples throughout India, dedicated to Maa Durga, the true manifestation of the absolute energy that pervades the universe, Kalkaji Temple has acquired an inimitable and distinguishing identity of its own over the years. Such is the ‘divine pull’ that it takes just a solitary visit to be allured to this “Divine Place of Worship” forever. Talk to devotees and they confess instantly, that they have been hooked to this unique place, virtually since time immemorial. What’s further more striking and distinctive, is the unusually large number of youngsters that throng this place throughout the year. This so, because it’s a general myth shared by a majority that youngsters are comparatively lesser drawn towards spirituality and mysticism. However, visit the temple and what one gets to spectacle is totally antithesis of the existent myth about youngster’s being less spiritualistic and ritualistic. There are myriads of legends that go synonymous with this ancient temple that dates back to about 3000 years ago, even prior to the era of Pandavas. According to the official version, Pandavas are believed to have ardently appeased and worshipped Goddess Kalka, who subsequently granted them the victory blessing boon in the epic Mahabharata war against the mighty Kauravas. Most of the devotees who have been regular visitors to the place attribute their life’s successes, accomplishments and glory to Goddess Kalka. For those visiting Delhi, a visit to this divine Place of Faith and Worship is a must on their itinerary. Over the years, Kalka Temple has also come to be known as the “Temple of Final Justice”. Quiz devotees or priests and they will have loads to share with you. Says Pandit Laxmi Dutt (Babli), a priest, “Goddess Kalka or the “Goddess of Justice” is epitome of “Justice” who delivers fair justice to those in her divine refuge. This is one court which supersedes every other court of law in the world, simply because the judgment delivered here, can just not be overruled or argued because the Chief Justice happens to be Maa Kalka. There’s indisputably no one more benevolent and loving than Maa Kalka as even for the sinners who come and seek penance, ‘Her Majesty’ makes them go through the salvation phase, and once they are purified, readily showers them with the choicest of her blessings. Such peerless is this place that devotees can actually feel heavenly vibrations in the literary sense here. ” For the true devotees, Divine Mother grants instant boons and rewards.Besides, it is a general conviction and belief that the Goddess answers all her devotees problems and ensures that no one goes empty handed from her imperial and blissful Temple. Shares Saurabh Chaturvedi, a sewadaar or a volunteer, as he puts it, “I have been in the service of the Holy Mother since the childhood and feel extremely blessed that I have spent the most precious phase of my childhood in Her Majesty’s service, and more aptly at her “Shree Charan”. Barring some initial opposition, my parents soon reconciled to my religious incliantions.
Kalash..of Kalka Temple..beautifully decorated..
The very thought of missing the daily temple routine is dreadful and horrendous since Sewa in Temple has become an integral part of my life’s daily schedule. I aspire to be in Her Divine service till eternity.” Informs renowned devotional singer Narender Chanchal, “People the world over have immense faith in the Mother Divine. Not everyone can come to this unique place of worship for the onus rests solely on Maa Kalka. If “Her Majesty Maa Kalka” so desires, only then a devotee might be summoned here with a Bulawa (Divine call from the Goddess), otherwise not. Symbolically also signifying that one must really consider himself or herself extremely blessed if he or she has been to this Temple. Bhandaras are organized and scintillating Bhajan and Kirtans are sung in praise of Maa. Interestingly, Goddess Kali has always enjoyed a significant presence in our culture. Karishamas (Miracles) happen here in this ancient Temple. A person’s worries, tensions and fears are soon overcome when one comes in the celestial refuge of Matarani. Devotes, irrespective of caste, creed or religion, have been flocking to this timeless place of worship ages after ages, and generations after generations.
Dr Sudha Bhardwaj ..devotee of Kalka Maa...
Such is the conviction amongst the followers and devotees that they commence the auspicious phases of their life by paying a visit to this Holy place.” Adds Pandit Naresh Bharwaj, a priest, “Though devotees visit the Temple round the year, the main attraction is on Tuesday’s and Saturday’s, and more significantly, during the Navaratri festival, when devotees come from far and near. People in and around this Temple have immense faith on the Mother Divine. The dignity of this place powers the devotees to return here time and again. No one with a pure heart returns empty handed from her portals.” Kalkaji Temple has always been a beacon of faith and fulfillment to thousands of devotees from all over the world holding great significance for the pilgrims. Alongside organizing Bhandaras, visitors can appreciate and dance to some of the most scintillating Bhajan and kirtans sung in praise of Maa. During Navratra’s, the Temple is totally crammed with thousands of devotees who flock to this place from all parts of the country for performing various sorts of religious rituals and for seeking Divine Darshan of Kalka Maa. During this nine-day period, there is festivity and bonhomie all around as the entire place gets enlivened with mesmerizing diyas, Jaikaaras and religious hymns all in praise of Universal Mother Durga. In the wake of the recent terror attacks, security in and around the temple complex has been strengthened alongside installation of CCTV’s for keeping a round the clock vigil for averting any sort of any untoward eventuality.