Posted in Food For Soul

Decoding Dharma 4: – Jeev Samadhi when fully awake

Hindu by default. Vegetarian by default.

But why do I always be wanna be reborn a Hindu. This is merely my simple ingestion of the essence of Dharma. I may or may not be right. (I think I have a long long way to go through many multiple janams before hoping for an elimination from the birth cycle). Practising Hindus must be aware how we seek liberation (Mukthi) from this vicious circle of birth and death (which is the illusion or Maya) in our Prarthana before blending with the One Collective Consciousness.

Just watched a video of a Buddhist monk in Thailand attain Jeev Samadhi when fully awake. I have blogged on this earlier. This kind of taking leave is possible only for Hindu/Buddhist/Jain monks of the Dharmic nature.

Where others fail and why is Hindu Dharma scientific. Because, only we speak of a higher consciousness that we regard as the nether. If we do not evolve as humans to this state of consciousness, we may get propelled into the birth cycle again and again. We may take a thousand janams and still be not rid of the birth and rebirth cycles. For Hindus, this emancipation is entirely a mind factor. This is the ultimate state of Nirvana or Moksha whatever name you may call it by. What we see in temples is for those at the base of the pyramid who have limited thought process to imagine anything beyond. As we may reach the upper echelons of our consciousness, we may start leaving rituals entirely behind. Some of my friends do follow parallel paths in search of this elusive truth or wisdom.

(You may ask about those folds where rituals are non-existent or minimal. Absence of rituals is no guarantee to enlightenment. Contrary to the belief of many, ritual processes enable us and prepare us for the next stages of consciousness. Yoga and Meditation may be effective tools for attaining the discipline for both mind and body control. Which is why the Christian Yoga that dispenses with Om Mantra may not serve purpose. Synchronization of the body and the mind can be achieved with focus with Om chanting)

I have spoken of the ‘ant and the boot’ story pretty often. To the minute ant at the edge of the boot, the imposing man can never be comprehensible. It is beyond the tiny brain of the little ant to break out of its intelligence level to understand the looming man in his entirety. This is all Hindu Dharma is about. That overwhelming knowledge is our God-Goddess. We simpletons may relate to this supreme consciousness as Shiva or Raam or Shakthi as per our comfort level.

I am sharing links to my earlier blog posts on this fascinating subject of mine. I have always regarded myself as kind of spiritual(!) over religious!!! That inspite of me having limited spiritual knowledge. Still this is the one single realization that the Abrahamic folds completely missed out on. This may be because, Hinduism has no founder. That we are not an organized religion like others, helps. Dharma is not an ‘ism’ at all. The Sanathana Dharma is way of life that if you follow with conscience can open doors to achieve supreme levels of higher conscience when you can belong in the other world without your physical/mortal body even as an earthling. Otherwise this is possible only when we shed our physicality (on death). This is where transcendental meditation comes in. Hindus are eternal seekers. We seek, don’t pray. We seek the supreme knowledge to attain the level of higher consciousness in our own time which is possible only for Mahans like Swami Vivekanand.

I am writing this up after watching the video of a Thai Buddhist monk take leave of his physical/mortal body when fully awake. I am not the owner of the video. This is a very recent recording. Generally this kind of Jeev Samadhi is not possible to witness at all. Rarest to happen. What a highest level of super consciousness the Buddhist monk must have attained. Technology has gifted us this wonderful opportunity to understand or decode the one true path which is Dharmic (Buddhism and Jainism and even Sikkism are offshoots of Hindu Dharma).

Pranaams to the noble Atma. Blessed. What a way to take leave. In a world wracked by violence and bombs and bloodshed, what a dharmic way some live by. Om Shanthi!

(On my friends’ suggestion I am adding this on India. Bharatha is Yoga Bhoomi while the Abrahamic nations in Middle East and the West are bhogis. In short, materialistic. Our paths can only be divergent).

Posted in Environment

Desert Rose.

We have media and environment/climate scientists screeching how the desertification of India and/or other parts of the world is extensive, spreading at a lightening speed as we lose the green cover steadily to rapid industrialization and urbanization and/or even global warming. That the ozone depletion is happening at an alarming rate… This sounds ominous and one presupposes arid regions of the world to be unfit for human inhabitation. Far from truth, even the Sahara in Africa which is the world’s largest desert sustains not only human life but also an exhaustive range of flora and fauna native to the terrain. Desert vegetation is an ecosystem as well and as good as any other. For a balanced ecology of Planet Earth, we need not only the rainforests and the tropics and tundra and savannas, but also the equally important and flourishing desert lands that within their bounds host quite an impressive array of wild species from foxes and hares to snakes and scorpions and lizards, apart from specific vegetation unique to this geographic region such as the cacti and other succulents and thorny bushes that thrive with almost no moisture content. Not to leave out the ship of the desert: the camels that can go on for months without water.

(No wonder in Tamil Sanga ilakkiyam, there is mention of Palai (desert) along with other classifications of landform such as Kurinji (hills), Mullai (forestry), Marudham (cropland) and Neidhal(coastal) even if by Palai, Thamizh Nad had only parched drylands to show).

Fifteen years I have been flying in and out of Middle East, residing here on and off. Finally got a taste of the wild today, with a drive to the deserts. There is this adjoining stretch parallel to sea in the south that serves as a bio-reserve which is left untouched (bio preserves are identified for protection by UNESCO the same way they certify World Heritage sites/structures in India such as our ancient temples for instance). This means, any human interference is not welcome in this protected sphere. No development as there is not a hint of civilization. This piece of land is preserved in its true element, the way it has been out of human reach for eons.

Recall such a reserve in Azerbaijan where even scrawling/etching in stone walls in caves by ancient humans (probably Neanderthal) is preserved to this day. A walk through the rocky surface that has withstood the wear and tear of time and climate is in recent memory. Not to be compared with temple architecture please!

An oil country, equally interesting was the crisscrossing of oil pipelines that were terrestrial therein. I expected underground laying. But obviously the scarcely populated breakaway nation from the former USSR could afford it. (More on this later). As someone who has been a resident of oil & gas rich country for over a decade, I have a natural curiosity in these matters. May be I cannot lend a scientific explanation to everything to the dot. But a mixed mumbo-jumbo is possible 😀

Back in our desert drive, we came upon tall shelfs that have stood mute witnesses to the sea erosion that ate away the territorial soil leaving this land parcel in its current state as we may find them today. The shelfs were abutting with their bottoms neatly (or sometimes raggedly) shaved. Like they were some tall sandy mushrooms with heads jutting like the buttons. This earthly projection was visible from afar as we drove in some kilometers. I thought of the vague outline of the Nilgiris or the Tirupathi segment of the Eastern ghats that you could follow from a distance like a shadow, once you would be in certain range. Like moth-eaten piece of cloth, the tell-tale signs were everywhere of this beautiful work of nature. Awe-inspiring. With minimal human imprint, we find something so profound in such a natural setting. It’s as if time stood still.

Not that I have not been to any other desert. The Sonoran deserts of the west coast of the US were a different vegetation over the Asian, stretching all the way from Arizona to California. Interspersed with the impressive and towering Sequoia standing tall like wise old men, the interesting landscape is a beauty that is unique and specific to this part of the world sporting probably the tallest cacti in the universe!

I’ve missed setting foot on the Thar desert of Rajasthan in India. A desert in our backyard with an interesting folk culture and rural life that we love to freeze in celluloid but something most of us have not experienced firsthand…

The deserts of Middle east have a vast expanse. From what little I glean from the men who have been here from building roads in the middle of nowhere to working the oil rigs, I reckon that the waves of dunes differ every few hundreds of miles. These are the toughest men of engineering. Physically and mentally. They have stories to tell me always… of the earliest oil men who lost their track in the deserts and succumbed to heat… of warring tribes… and so on… Oman and Saudi have the silkiest unblemished flow of desert being largest nations. Soil variation (deserts have limestone terrain that explain the non-seepage of surface rain water) lends a degree of difference in the desert pattern and even in vegetation. Oman is well known for the ‘wadi’ or the desert rivers (or perhaps streams) that can erupt in an instance (being seasonal) washing away anything in vicinity including landcruisers and camels in a blink of an eye. A wadi is also essentially like a watering hole or place. In colloquial we may term it an Oasis. A replenishing or watering spot for camels and goatherds. There is some vegetation usually in and around a wadi.

In Azer, the sight of oil pipelines running on the surface amazed me. I came to know, as it is mostly a barren country, this is possible. I learnt a few things about oil production onshore as well as offshore from men working them. Over years I have been hearing a lot in fact. Fortunate enough to see a few oil wells from a distance. A single well means, the pressure is good. This may be just a small shed like we have for motor shed in India (in our homes). A small roofed square piece of land, out there in the desert. Just like that. Boxed in with a single spout. Connected to the pipeline. In such an easy well, oil needed no thrust or external force to bring it to the surface. It was bubbly flowing out free with no pumping. Blessed are such oil wells or nations with such a cheap source of crude oil. Sometimes the oil may be in depth and would have to travel a distance to be brought to surface. Carbon-di-oxide and other gases may be used to bring up the oil in such cases. More points or a couple of oil wells may be clubbed in such an event under one roof to facilitate the mechanical procedure. This may look like an extended hut with tiled roof. Power is solar mostly. A very complex process this is. Even working the oilrig that will bore into the earth for probable source of oil is not without risk, executed with utmost safety precautions in place. If the oil explored needed CO2 to be brought out crossing various other levels of gases under terra (such as the highly volatile and combustible methane), then the CO2 itself has to be managed well, brought in via pipelines. A friend was detailing how like the hot steam condenses into water droplets, the CO2 too condenses into liquid that has to be checked and prevented at every stage to maintain the gaseous state. An oil well had a life of ten years on average after which its yield would start dropping eventually forcing a closedown. Most oil wells in Oman I learnt worked this way. I believe, (lpg) gas is mined pretty much the same way as oil. It is even more risky business because as we know, hot steam is of highest temperature over boiling water. What a technology and how this oil and gas make our lives so simple, far away from where they are mined. In India, Bombay High is the offshore oil exploration we know of.

For this one reason, the deserts are kind of divine to me. Pristine and mostly untouched, yet yield such a black liquid gold so that the humanity can have a better quality of life… We float so many, many political theories… Yet here I find something so profound… that makes the world go on… Despite me I am humbled and lost for words… Mother Earth yields us so… much… with no questions asked…

Interesting that close to the oil wells, camels graze as families! My husband has seen quite a few wild camel families in Oman unlike the domesticated ones of UAE or elsewhere. That is because, the desert there is endless almost. Oman is in my bucket list, let’s see…

Apparently there is one huge untapped oil and gas source in Russia beneath the ice sheet that is the largest in the world, but the cost of mining is discouraging. Even if there are many sources of oil and gas around the world, one goes for cost-effective means always.

My husband was also involved with oil and gas projects in Malaysia where oil was mined offshore. His project was to build massive oil storage tanks (big round ones on elevated platforms). It always used to beat me how the south east Asian nation that was equatorial and so greenish, could be an oil country at the same time. The oil produced there was of aviation quality.

As the world slowly moves over to other energy sources from the fossil fuels, may be the oil wells will become a thing of the past in a decade or more.

Moving over to the north coast, we came upon shallow beaches unspoilt and clean. On the way, we spotted some mangroves as well where one can go kayaking but considering the corona pandemic and the local visitors there already, we gave it a miss. There were historic sites with rock carvings by ancient man who walked this part of earth thousands of years ago. Not as extensive as in Azer but I found the scrawls in the rocky surface equally impressive. The geometric patterns are fit for case study. So does that mean the iron axes were already in vogue. Or was this in Stone age when the etching was done with stone weapons. The beaches in this coast are secluded and so very serene. Beautiful laidback setting for a winter picnic. Will return soon.

I would want to add a few pictures here, not much.

Everything is in my memory, and that is great!

My eyes were on the scraggy bushes and date palms numbering against all odds. Putting up with the heat and sand storms. Bravo to any wildlife that exists here, sustaining this wonderful delicate ecosystem and surviving the tough rigorous life…

I have been on desert safaris yet I think nothing can prepare us for the real desert scene.

A few bedouin make-shift shanty homes here and there spoke of the love of the nomadic tribes for the world’s most earnest way of life. It aches my heart to think that even these folks are forced to civilize and conform with the rest of the humanity

Posted in Extras

Social Media Etiquette …

Social media manners and ethics we need to adhere to, To my feeble knowledge :

  • First of all whether it is Instagram or Facebook, please DO NOT photobomb!!! One or two pictures will do. Once a while a batch of pictures when you go on tour will be fine. Even a series of tour albums must be fine if and when you hop from place to place. But no recollection and reposting of memories please unless they’re very special!
  • Do not talk too much about your kids’ success. Some over there aren’t even parents and may not become parents. And many of those parents out there may not have brightest kids like yours! One of the most sensitive issues is the kids stories parents post in social media. You can share the graduation picture, an instrumental recital or a competition prize or sports award for instance. Anything more than that like detailed academic achievements, contest/match wins etc., are irrelevant. I am surprised at kids who allow their parents to post their scuba diving and mountain trek pictures.
  • We all love our spouses, kids, who says no. Too many family pictures not welcome. How many broken families we have in our midst. Once a while cute family pics will look great!
  • Party pics once a while fine. Shopping pictures rarely. Outing with friends is something most can identify with. Must be okay in moderation.
  • Restaurant/eating out pics in moderation (preferably with friends)
  • Black & white or old family albums fine. Childhood/old wedding pics/school day pics win hearts.
  • Family weddings/birthday celebrations/anniversaries are fine without having to splash/photobomb. Moderation is the word.
  • Fitness routines must be double okay! We all love to hear the extra push you give.
  • Foodies most welcome to share mouthwatering recipes and pics!
  • Cute animal/babies stuff super duper okay!
  • Flowers/wildlife/anything beautiful and creative are like a breather.
  • Music and dance are appealing.
  • Let others tell their stories too. We can always host a private blog where we can detail our personal experiences. Let not social media become vehicles for our personal victory display. Or we can load everything to Google photos or similar platform and share link.
  • Politics can be minimal without inciting hatred. The purpose for being in social media is to connect with people, not disconnect. Again, all of us post sensitive political matters but let us make sure we do not infringe on anyone’s self-respect or dignity when we post anything online. This unwritten rule applies to me as well. One man’s freedom fighter is another man’s terrorist. World goes around on this principle.
  • Religion is fine but inciting hatred with religious stuff is not tolerable. Once a while even I enjoy reading verses from the Bible or the Koran so I hope even our Bhagwad Gita and other quotes and temple views will be tolerated in the same vein. Social media that way can be a great place to soak up on others’ culture. While we have every right to wear the badge of our faith on our social media sleeve, we do not have a right to express opinion on others. We have to stick to our guns, that’s all. We have no business with others. As simple as that.
  • Do not share cruelty pictures/rape stories/death and destruction/bloodbath videos or anything that has to do with violence or despair in social media. I find this extremely disturbing. I may write a thousand stories on this in my personal blog but even hearing a word such as rape from a male even in social media can be very upsetting to me. I do think my friends have a similar mindset. I don’t understand this psychology either.
  • Stay off super sensitive issues concerning safety and security of people or nations.
  • Stay off taboo subjects. Not all have appetite for this kind of info.
  • Do not provoke any individual/community via social media and contribute to escalating tension in a peaceful society. Harmony in an inter-dependent society more important than your stupid nonsense and arrogance.
  • Do not discuss controversial issues social/political/economic. A light sarcastic post must do. In-depth analysis is for mass media, not social media
  • Social media educated are the dumbest asses. Let us keep that in mind.
  • Do not post personal details for your own security.
  • Do not discuss your health in social media.
  • Do not vent in social media your anger, frustration, jealousy etc. This is not where we seek justice.
  • Do not share your sob stories with your social media friends. First of all they may have no clue. Secondly this is not a burden that they must share. Thirdly they do not know the other side. Finally who cares. So stop making a fool of yourself.
  • Do not preach too much by way of messages/quotes. One or two wisecracks are fine.
  • Small celebrations like a promotion in professional life can be shared in social media safely without inviting envy.
  • Little perks such a new automobile or an Apple phone can call for a social media celeb, no problem.
  • Daily civic issues of your corporation, village road, metro rail, water supply, power cable issue – all these can be dealt at Whatsapp group level. No need to discuss these trivial non-issue matters in social media as most of your buddies will have be having nothing to do with your local problems. There is no need to forcefully educate them on what is happening in your front.
  • Most importantly, when you read a book, please do not publish the story in Facebook the next day when you finish! When you watch a picture in TV/Netflix/Prime/Cinemas, please do not write a review in the Facebook. Reserve that to your blogpost where not every social media buddy of yours makes it a point to stop. This one single ethic that we may have/practice can go on to tell a lot on our character.
  • Unless yours is a business account, try not to sell Amway or LIC policies!
  • Sharing social causes is fine.
  • Share inspiring stories.
  • Share fun stories and games and puzzles.
  • Share positive stories and avoid negative vibes.
  • Do not tag someone without their permission.
  • Do not include pictures of others’ family or home without their permission.
  • It takes nothing not to hurt someone in social media, not to dent others’ pride. Let proud people stay proud.
  • Do not get into arguments with friends in social media. It is not worth it. I have done that mistake but I am wary of repeating it in future.
  • Most of us use social media for diversion mainly. We come here to relax, not to get worked up. Please let us all remember that.
  • Complement others generously. Be a giver not always a taker. It costs nothing to put a smile on someone’s face.

I am not sure if I adhere to these unwritten social media rules myself but I try to follow as much as I can.

Posted in Political

Who will take responsibility for India Covid.

Who was the authority behind the conducting of state assembly polls in India in April. And Kumbhmela (that was dispersed after a reported fifty crore had already assembled).

Will those who are responsible come forward and take dharmic responsibility for the sorry and heartbreaking condition of my Mother India today.

Because even until April third week, India was recording very low stats from covid 19 first wave. My hometown Chennai was recording around hardly a hundred fresh cases. Total India fresh infection numbered a mere two thousand plus, negligible figure on one billion plus population.

It appeared, we had almost scraped through the corona crisis.

Most of us were visiting each other from November last, gathering in wedding halls and parties and even holidaying in local resorts, flying to destinations within India with covid protocol in place, and with covid safety precautions followed. Of course there is always this percentage that went without masks. This happens in every other country, not just India. Buses and trains were operational minimally in my state Tamil Nadu. By and large, normalcy was returning with businesses and factories running in full swing. Workers had returned to their trades and banks and other offices were fully functional. Even the beauty salons and gyms had opened up with malls not far behind. Restaurants were seeing steady footfall.

So what went wrong for us that we see ourselves in this horrific condition today. This is a mere 15 day development. Even as I boarded flight from India to Middle East on April 21st, the situation was not this nightmarish. There were reports that covid was on rise but the survival rate was still too good, close to one hundred percent recovery rate.

Assembly polls were due in key states in the month of April, but reportedly the election commission became the puppet of someone in authority. Mass rallies were seen everyday in populous states and even our national leaders seemed to endorse the crowds, forgetting that a pandemic was raging around the world. Call it over-confidence or short-sightedness or simple stupidity, the nation is paying a big price for this grave slip (pun intended) with dear, dear lives of my countrymen. It breaks my heart to see the funeral pyres burning day in and day out, of the chimney of the electric crematoria breaking down on nonstop workload and highest temperatures… A friend who is rendering humanitarian service as a volunteer said, the crematoria are open until midnight with corpses queueing up even in my hometown. Normally the closing time is 4 to 6 pm with prior booking in place. Blood banks are running low, oxygen howmuchever produced is proving to be insufficient and there is endless wait for hospital beds, with lifesaving drugs becoming scarcer and expensive…

None of us imagined this day when we voted for the assemblies in our states that were sworn in recently. Polling was a peaceful exercise and not rushed. In the meanwhile, vaccines were being administered. I got both my doses of Covishield in March-April in India. Some of my friends took the desi Covaxin, supposedly the best in the category. The vaccination drive however was yet to pick up in full throttle, even if it came free in govt PHCs. I took the jab in a private hospital that charged me a reasonable 500 bucks for both doses. My immunization certificate was downloadable from govt website. Everything seemed to be in proper place and working. In fact I was looking forward to a covid-free India by year end.

Then the hell broke loose and we did not know what hit us. The massive massive covid 19 second wave was on us like a tsunami. By this time I had left India (not fearing covid but because I waited for this day for 1.5 years to join my husband working abroad).

Not only the political rallies for the Assembly polls, even our religious places that opened up fully were a reason for the covid to flare up. I am a pretty regular at our temples but I visited the temples when the crowds were thinnest. I was shocked to see thousands gathering at Kapaleeshwara temple festival. The friend who is cremating near and dear ones today was also posting pictures from Marudeeshwara temple festival in the city not more than a month back. Not only the government, even the educated did not realize the gravity and severity of the corona pandemic. There were proud social media doctors who claimed victories for our temples that saw historic crowds with resumption of temple festivals. Recently a friend said, many who attended the Arupathumoovar festival of Kapali temple in Mylapore got infected and quite a few of them lost their lives in the weeks that followed. This time the covid struck without notice. Asymptomatic mostly, the symptoms such as breathlessness on oxygen depletion surfaced much later when the lungs got infected majorly. By now, the patient barely would be left with any any survival chances.

Last but not the least is those like Sadhguru himself irresponsible and misleading masses. Who can forgive or forget him for taking over the elephant corridor and installing Shiva in nature’s setting denying the pachyderms their dwelling place, forest country and endangering the very survival/existence of the jumbos. This one man could be singly held for extinction of Indian wild elephant (in future if it must happen (god forbid)). What about the Assamese forests taken over for Ayurvedic private labs by this Baba Ramdev for commercial ventures. Will the helpless cries of our hapless wildlife leave this nation without any curse. You are talking big on Karma and Dharma. Old man Sadhguru, do you even know the real meaning for these terms. You are destroying one majestic life species and planting trees as compensation by river side. Never mind, I too have chipped in with my little contribution because I want more trees. Is this the guru’s true sense of justice. You are arguing who must by birth be performing puja in temples. No, I didn’t even listen to your nonsense on that. I may not be the most enlightened, but I am clear on what constitutes equality and social justice. None including you have been out of this world and returned alive in flesh and blood to tell us what lies far behind. Yours is yet another floating theory. I have enjoyed the Shivratri celebrations at Isha but this year I gave it a deliberate miss. I have not watched a single performance this year. This god man who talks too much still had the gall to convene this celebration with thousands of guests dancing and singing at the height of a ruthless bloody pandemic situation. What kind of guru is this one. Now safely tucked in in his secure ivory tower, he is giving lectures as to how to deal with the pandemic. Should we tolerate such mindless gross violations of nature and law only because someone tags the Hindu line and we would like to check the expansion of the Christian missionaries in the region.

We blamed the Jamat for convening at an inappropriate time and spreading the first wave far and wide. Will those in charge explain why even the Kumbh was given a green signal in the first place. What use in retraction at a later stage after the damage was inflicted. Indian masses are not one hundred percent literate.

As for Assembly elections, Tamil Nadu has gone without one for over two years in the eighties when the then prime minster Shri Rajiv Gandhi annulled the DMK assembly in the state. Governor rule ensued and the state assembly polls followed in the year 1991 (during which campaign Rajiv was assassinated). Who says there is no precedent.

I don’t know to write fancy, I write what I feel strongly about. I am not a member of any political party. I am aware that with a little more caution and prudence, India could have skipped the second wave totally. We could have made it unscathed, we were almost there. Or we could still be having things under control – not like this with pandemonium prevailing everywhere. Well, I think i just discovered the root word for ‘pandemonium.’

My heart beats and bleeds for India. My prayers are for all Indian citizens as well as global citizens. How many ever janma I may take, I want to be reborn only a Hindu and in India, nowhere else and as none else.

May peace times return soon.

Media vultures feeding on dead corpses, please keep off.

China will always go down in history as a monstrous bloodsucking life-taker, hated globally. The world will never, not in a zillion zillion years forgive China. India with all our woes will still be remembered the life-giver by many nations, loved by most. It makes one hell of a difference. Let our vaccines program continue. Even in our difficult hour, let us go on serving humanity throwing a lifeline to poorest of poor nations with our covid vaccines.

I choose to stay positive. I believe in a better world. I look forward to a glorious dawn shortly.

Posted in Political

Pay off the PTC women passengers with TASMAC revenue.

I don’t always agree with him but here’s something for Tamil Nadu from Kerala. As a woman I resent and reject concessions and seek/demand equal footing with men anywhere and everywhere…

Social media is abuzz with the infectious glee and chatter of women passengers of city’s PTC buses grateful to the newly sworn-in chief minister of Tamil Nadu, MK Stalin, for the free bus ride. Once upon a time the coveted transport of middle class Madras, now the metropolitan buses mostly ply working class as we have been sighting a profusion of four wheelers and two wheelers in the city in last 10-20 years leaving no space to pedestrians. From vegetable vendor and flower seller to factory worker and house maid, women who rely on bus services are overwhelmingly from our lowest strata who cannot afford pricey modes of transport to ferry them across the quagmire of our city traffic.

PTC has been heaping monumental losses for years on row now. When was the last time we had surplus over deficit when it came to running our transport department. The present fleet of vehicles on road is in no good condition which can do with replacement or effective repair . How many Diwali eves we have had in the past when the annual festival bonus payable to the PTC staff (especially the drivers and conductors) would be held back by ruling government for want of funds, forcing the crew to blackmail both govt and public with an indefinite strike. The buses remain the lifeline of the lower middle class commuters, so the government would buckle down with no other choice, giving in to their demands. The threat had the potential to bring the city to a standstill, not to leave out the political overtones it can take.

From my school/college days, concession in bus fare has been available to students of educational institutions using the PTC services. Only concessions, not total waiver. And even this small rebate would be applicable only in regular routes/buses never in specials (and specials outnumber regulars any day).

So how will it be possible for the newly elected DMK govt to offer free rides to women passengers?

One or only possible answer: TASMAC. The government liquor chain outlets of the state will foot the bill happily by all means, unless there is a corollary to this theory.

Who are these women grinning ear to ear with the govt freebie announcement waiving off their bus charges? Our part-time sweepers and cleaners, housemaids, cooks, factory workers, tailors etc. Dear ladies, can you assure us now that the extra pennies you save thus will not end up in TASMAC bars through your alcoholic spouses.

Don’t please blame our Bihari or Nepali bhais ever for stealing your jobs. They make our lives much more easier than your busy husbands in the TASMAC queue. They also charge a fraction while delivering quality work in time. In ten years they will vote the BJP state govt to power!

This freebee culture is killing the industriousness and productivity in Tamil population. It has done its damage to the rural sector. Now whatever is thriving in the urban centers will be challenged.

Will the DMK govt clarify on these points:

  • Will the same frequency of services of PTC buses be maintained if women passengers are not to be charged for the rides.
  • How many plying buses, how many corridors exactly. How many in sheds for repairs and refurbishments. Exact figures please.
  • How many buses need replacement.
  • Will the waiver of bus charge be applicable to air-conditioned services, special routes and special services?
  • Will the waiver of bus charge for women be applicable to additional services provided for festival times.
  • Will there by any pay-cut for PTC staff. Will the promotions due to PTC staff, increments pending etc., be on time or will they have to be postponed to pay for the expensive DMK picnic with our women population.
  • Will there be a reduction in fleet volume.
  • What will happen to modernization plans. Will everything be put on hold.
  • Data on the staff recruitment status and human resources training in PTC please. Will they have to be deferred to afford this concession to women passengers. When are the next recruitment drives and HRT due. Will they be as per schedule or will these be cancelled out.
  • Strength of the fleet that will be operational six months down the lane along with corridor picture as against the present prevailing scene. A complete and comparative list must be published in media.
  • What is the balance sheet of PTC showing. Exact magnitude of losses. How is the deficit going to be met.
  • What is the revenue from TASMAC and how is it exactly reinvested.
  • Why no TASMAC outlet is closed as yet. It was the DMK govt who protested in a big way for closure of TASMACs during JJ reign. Personally i was witness to one in Harrington road being shut forever thanks to the violence unleashed by the party. We had to turn back from our street fearing mobs instigated by the party workers.
  • Can the DMK publish a declaration in social media that none in their political party or ministry or their families has a vested interested in anything connected to TASMAC including in the breweries.
  • Are there plans to channelize any central funds into PTC women freebie.
  • What is the DMK plan outlay for PTC improvement in next 5 years. Will the transport corporation ever become debt-free in DMK governance.
  • What is the exact loan component the DMK is planning to add to the state exchequer with the women’s freebie. Is the party going to leave the state neck deep in debts.
  • Is there a proposal to raise property taxes, electricity charges and other corporation/municipality levies in next 2-3 years.

Finally, as a woman who demands equality with men on every and equal footing, I resent any concession given to women because of our gender. It is a shame and it is regressive.

Posted in Political

Dear PM Modi, Please dispatch Corona Vaccines to Nepal

Nepal, once the only constitutionally Hindu country in the world now sadly neutralized into secular, is seeing catastrophe with covid surge. India, the behemoth, can survive any onslaught, but Nepal cannot. None can deny the cultural connect we Hindus have with the Himalayan kingdom. Ever since Nepal started batting for China, India-Nepal ties are strained. India should be the good samaritan, the big brother it is to the subcontinent, and come forward to help Nepal in this distress. India has the capacity and capability to accommodate Nepal in the scheme of things. Is our PM Modi listening. An earnest plea dear prime minister, let not our Nepali brothers and sisters suffer. Please fly a contingent right this moment to the landlocked nation that is helpless. Nepal direly is in need of corona vaccines. I am well aware, India needs to take care of 1.3 billion. Still, let us not give up on each other. Vaccinating a few more crores of Nepalis won’t hurt India.

Prime MInister Shri Narendra Modi ji. My earnest appeal to you. Please help our brethren in Nepal on warfooting basis putting aside our political and policy differences. Please send a batch of our India made corona vaccines (Covaxin if not Covishield) at your earliest to Nepal, on humanitarian grounds. Please lend Nepal a helping lifesaving hand in this crisis. I am thanking you in advance on behalf of my Nepali friends.

Nepal is family. Whatever the differences, when India can do this for Bangladesh, why not for Nepal.

Posted in Political

Humbled By The Humanitarian Help

India never accepted aid whether it was for Tsunami or for the Latur earthquake. One proud third world nation.

But now we have this humbling experience as world rushes aid to the country struck hard by the second wave of Covid 19.

When the US could take in help during their worst hurricane that tore up New Orleans, India need not have to feel guilty or shame when it comes to receiving help when it is really needed. There will always be a time to give back.

I read a Sadhguru quote that said, no nation in the world has endless supply of hospital beds or medicines or oxygen. Only what is normally required on average is stocked up in whichever part of the world as we know.

India could have boosted oxygen production but overconfidence in dealing successfully with the first wave lowered our guards. We did not understand the pandemic in its totally or severity. What a cost of learning!

One billion nation, we were donating/exporting corona vaccines as well without reserving everything for ourselves.

India has flown food and medicines to every other part of the world as aid when hit by natural disasters or war. Not to leave out the Indian Peace Keeping Forces for troubled parts of the world. It is okay to accept help my dear fellow countrymen in present times. India needs no economic aid. Only oxygen cylinders even if oxygen production is wholly boosted in last few day locally.

It is all a give and take. World is responding because world remembers what we have done for them in the past. Just before the double mutant took us by shocking surprise and speed, we had flown batches of corona vaccines made in India to Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada etc., on humanitarian consideration. Our good work speaks for us. India is cashing in on goodwill earnt. When the world wants to lend a helping hand, let us take it dear Indians.

It does hurt me though terribly that we are humbled today to receive this help in this crises. How many aids India threw out.

India is grateful for this timely help. Grateful to our second home Qatar. Your help will never be forgotten. Grateful to France. Russia.

Humbled and most grateful, is all I can say. Thank you world community. Very much appreciate this kind gesture. The favour will be returned with thanks at a later date.

Nobody is infallible, invincible and nobody is indispensable. Nobody is too insignificant or petty either. Siru thurumbum pal kutha udavum as they say.

Posted in Extras

Art never stops from evolving

From the limited art I am exposed to, I guess art never stops evolving.

In Dan Brown’s ‘Origin’ precisely we come across museums of such an unimaginable plane.

After viewing art in 3D, 4D etc., here in Doha at international art exhibitions, I think I can come to accept that art keeps evolving the way we may like it or not. Most Indians I have met do have an issue with this idea. Art to them has to be at a standstill. Necessarily two dimensional. They aren’t even willing to explore further possibilities, anything out of the canvas. This is their comfort zone. (Like they have fixed ideas about everything including our caste system. Just cannot grow out of it. So that’s why we stagnate).

I owe my little and negligible interest in art to my hubby who is an amateur artist. He mostly only sketches, or does water colours (his best) or acrylic. Through him I got exposed to mixed media art and art of different forms. Finger art, Calligraphy, Collage, Charcoal just to name a few. I never knew calligraphy could be so beautiful! Although I cannot understand the arabic in this form of art (we get to see only arabic calligraphy here), I seem to somehow transcend the distance and peek into the artist’s mind. Mostly from war torn nations of the world, the works would appear a silent scream to me. Especially calligraphy. Without deciphering a single word I could hear the plea or desperation. Such is the power of art. I think the alphabets of the arabic language are also well suited and naturally inclined/adaptable for this form of art. From questioning the purpose of the art I started appreciating art with time.

The MF Hussein one was a good one. Contrary to what was alleged by Indian media, in spite of the Hindu God depiction or representation in whatever way, I could only appreciate the genius unquestioningly, never doubting the artist’s intentions. Apparently this man adored Hindu Goddesses, no other way I could see it. His reverence is what led to the art. We saw whatever remained after destruction of the rest in India. I think this is a priceless lifetime experience of mine which cannot ever be had in India.

In one art exhibition, only the sound of a fountain was the art. You have to have a very keen ear. You have to pick up the rhythm. How the fountain is designed to generate a specific kind of musical (not really musical although it did seem to have a beat of sort) pitter patter is what is perceived to be art. In the journey to the fountain, the water races through some exposed plumbing works which all define the final output. Please do not compare this with the Dubai Mall fountain even if I have to agree, even that synchronization is sort of art with its mechanical effects.

Coming to terms with this kind of totally different dimension of art with sound etc., first was baffling to my simple mind. Breaking the jinx about the 2D art that we normally suppose art to be was not easy. Once we are free of these trappings, I guess we can enjoy any art better.

My hubby was also as a scrap artist and kolam artist (!) in his univ days so I have heard about this kind of art a 1000 times. The best scrap art exhibit is here executed by an Indian artist Prabodh Gupta.

Photography exhibition: This is good as well but I savour conventional art over photo expos.

Everything practically counts as art. Music, or for that matter any sound as I just said, anything arranged with an idea is art.

I am truly missing art from my life now. Otherwise here in Doha almost every week we go to art exhibitions and galleries that are open for free to the public. First i was not that much into art. But now i very much look forward to it. I view art as kind of meditation!

We spent hours in Paris, Florence and Rome looking at art. Staggering old world art. Exploring museums after museums. Fascinating insight into the medieval world. Unbelievable. Almost as if you are on time-machine transported to another world! I wished I learnt my world history proper!

I do like the contemporary one as well for the difference it makes to traditional art as we may come to view in museums. Cherish the Picasso moments here in Doha. The master is believed to be behind the modern art scene and he had his share of critics. At least thrice we were there to have our fill of artistic satisfaction. God’s gift so far as I see it. We won’t be getting another chance like this because, to view this batch of work, you will have to shell out hefty fee in any other part of the world.

I do like the contemporary artists as well. Encouraging them is important Have met dozens of nationalities that way who exhibit outstanding works. Some were already fetching great prices. The younger artists have a completely different perception of ideas and objects. They are not like the old masters. Refreshingly new thought process.

One art exhibition that we visited was that of paint spray work on corrugated sheets in steel (abstract art). Some were folded, some straight, some arranged in patterns like pleats… This meant welding and heat treatment to the artist’s perceptions. Mere transporting the bulky frames in pick-ups was a big headache for the artist who probably invented this kind of art! He was a regular professional who slowly came to discover this art form on his own, trying out his hand over a range of media. He perfected this one even if it was way too expensive and cumbersome and space consuming. Setting up the gallery can be a daunting task. Each piece weighed like a ton and was of huge dimensions! But what a work the artist created. What a mindset. What a creativity. That kind of illusions have to be seen to be believed. I understood, the spray had to be done at controlled temperature etc. Nothing was effortless. The artist was doing great because his art neatly fit into boutique hotels, office lounges etc. We were talking to the artist and he said, he struggled for two decades to convince anyone that this was art indeed. The same galleries that shunned him were now inviting him and clients were buying him out for whatever he quoted.

So why be shy of inventing your own art. What you make is art. Or whatever you make constitutes art.

Because of viewing art in different formats, I am now able to accept music in different genres as well. Music in English language has been an aversion for years now. In teens perhaps enjoyed a little. India is a place full of music. There is a lot to listen to. My first choice is always devotional for morning hours. Then classical Carnatic. After watching ‘The Disciple’ I feel guilty expecting the carnatic vocalists to do the bhakthi ghaana! Never thought about it in this angle. Of course there is always the filmy stuff for light music to ease stress.

More music is emerging. Initially I was not sure about the Carnatic renditions of Ashoka’s edicts or Tamil Kritis of contemporary times. I tell myself now, when I can come to accept art multi-dimensional, why cannot I view music in the same light. Art has not been reduced by the different dimensions it is growing by. Change is inevitable. Fresh blood has to be infused at some point or the regular fare will start sounding stale will time. The classical component will not lose it sheen with the introduction of some new aspects. I think the carnatic can absorb everything and grow from here. This mindset is possible for me because of my exposure to evolving art. I don’t think my fellow Indian citizens can ever think like me. I am not an expert by any means either in art or music. Just a thought…

If Thyagaraja and Dikshikthar were first generation, then Papanasam Sivan and Bharathi come in the next. Who is going to represent the present age in Carnatic world. I’ve thought about it. There is definitely a void. Anything or anyone from after 1970s. We in India always talk about our pazham perumai. Indhiyaavin pazham perumai. Like our ancient temples. Brahadeshwar is over 1000 years old, Kailasa from millennia before, dear Hindus, what do you have to show for this age. What landmark. What fresh creation. (Talking too muchaaah? 😀 Innum konjam vishayam therinja enna pudikkave mudiyadhu!)

Who is a rebel. Anyone with ideas going against the grain of fundamental framework may be labelled one, is it not. What happened to Galileo when he said earth revolved around the sun. Sometimes the time lapse for realization can be pretty long but will eventually serve its purpose. The audience have to mature psychologically, emotionally. Must have an open mind to accept fresh ideas and be sportive to receive and process conflicting theories. In any case, if an art form or music is to be viewed critically, it means a runaway success in my dictionary atleast 😀

As for art, nothing must go free either. Once my hubby was approached by a Brit to do a manual of sketches. He happily agreed because it was like his first (and probably only) professional assignment. He never expected a check but he was paid well for his work. When he refused, his client said that art must never go free and that even if amateur, my husband should charge something so that others would come to know that even that little art they cannot produce on their own. That it needed to be bought over for a price for consumption. After this encounter, we both are pretty convinced that charging for art is reasonable and justified. For professionals this is livelihood.

Art also gives you a great insight into the artist’s mind as I have seen. In middle-east, the visual art form is the only art encouraged. As performing art is not viewed favourably, the total focus is on visual art. This may be the reason I always find art from this region to be the best over our Indian. Some frames I have seen have been from wall to wall. Floor to floor. Staggering array of emotions packed into art. Whatever is repressed finds an expression into art… like way of screams, challenges, bold stances, supplication, surrender etc. Could such an art also serve to be a page from the book of world history? I hope so. Perhaps unwritten, undocumented sadly.

I have viewed some Indian works but mostly find them trivial as far as content is concerned (!) Necessity is the mother of invention, and perhaps this is the reason our local artists may not be that very explorative. When freedom of expression is restricted, then it finds a way in some in solid art forms. However my hubby refutes my statement and says, I haven’t seen much of Indian art and I am talking about something that I have no knowledge about, which is also true.

Inventiveness is the formula to succeed. We fail to invent, we stop with our growth. That much I know! No need to look for acceptance anywhere which will come with time. Audience keep changing. Art is constant. Oh, Art is evolving all the time! What may not be palatable to one gen can turn out to be a feast to the next.

The society or art that cannot unlearn and relearn stops growing. All said, I am a mere connoisseur of art and music! Grateful as a layman, for even this little exposure into this beautiful world that brings so much of peace and happiness to humanity. With even a little more art or music knowledge, I would be having a better perspective of both. Would like to underscore the importance of imparting art and music lessons to kids at an younger age so that they can live life to fullest.

Science for Art’s sake always, not vice versa.

Let’s enjoy anything and everything. Nothing is taboo. No holds barred.

Posted in Political

World Reporting On India Covid

Well, every dog has its day in the sun and today is simply not India’s day. The dogs I can think of include BBC for one thing.

Before going to world reporting, let me analyze what could be the reason for the first world nations turning against India.

  • India Covid vaccines are cheapest in the world and over 85% effective. Pfizer is many many multiple times more expensive than India made Covishield (for Astrazeneca) and Covaxin (100% India make which is rated the best for the live vaccine it is).
  • India is unofficially the vaccine capital of the world and the american pharma etc., are losing heavily to India in the business who would like to monopolize corona vaccine industry.. First of all no share in the huge India market of 1.3 billion population. If not for India, there is only China for bulk production of corona vaccines.
  • India is distributing Covid vaccine mostly free to poorest nations like Bangladesh. Over 100 nations are looking upto India for corona vaccine that cannot be disappointed. All this business is supposed to go to US or Europe.
  • The richest nations have stocked maximum covid vaccines and the idea of the third world nations having access to corona vaccine is unacceptable to them.
  • Shortage of Covid vaccines in India could be due to the fact that we are also catering to the world at the same time and not holding back everything for ourselves. It is like a man having housing loan, car loan etc., still supporting someone poorer and down the line. The logic is as simple as that.

Yes, the toll is mounting in India yet it is not as bad as it was in US or UK or Italy. Why do foreign media sensationalize India covid news?

  • Hindus cremate the dead and the image of cremation can be grotesque unlike plain burial in islamic or christian societies. You can bury a hundred in quiet but a single cremation can be indigestible. Its a very very ghastly sight. Which is why women are not allowed for cremation in India ever (traditionally). Now the metropolitan cities and second tier cities have completely switched over to electric crematoria, still the villages etc., go for woodpyre only. If you take the case of Delhi, the capital is surrounded by UP villages from where patients descend upon the city for major medical treatments. Their rural dwellings have no electric crematoria mostly. A cremation makes for most horrific picture. Sight of more than a couple of cremations at the same time can be visually upsetting. A cremation also consumes more or maximum time over burial. It is therefore understandable that when there are more deaths than usual, there can arise a contingency situation unlike in the case of christian/islamic burials. You have to have real courage to look at the cremation pictures. It is exactly this kind of human tragedy that BBC is cashing in on. One has to be a sadist to cover these things round the clock. Sensationalizing death and disease. UK reported maximum deaths in second wave, running short of hospital beds but none of us glorified death scene like these Brits are doing now. Same goes for America.
  • Even the current stat on world meter is because of India figure going ballistic in last 10 to 15 days only. Just a week prior to that we were reporting national average of 16,000 fresh cases only per day on 1.3 billion population count.
  • Undoubtedly in last 10 days, the death statistics in India have gone for a toss. Even in February this year, my hometown Chennai recorded less than 100 fresh cases per day. Situation was perfectly under control. It was as if we had made it without a second wave. April caught the nation by shock and surprise.
  • The second wave in India is lethal as the coronavirus is airborne now as second mutant and third mutant appear on the scene. These arrived in India from the UK mainly.
  • BBC and UK/Europe have long held agenda on India They want to christianize India while the arab world would want to islamise us. India is still an unfinished business for them. The one single largest Hindu nation in the world hurts and dents severely the western sentiments. They will do anything to break a Dharmic India headed by our PM Shri Narendra Modi who is Hindu nationalist.
  • More and maximum rapes in UK and US but how India rape story is media-hyped is well known. UK holds world record for maximum male rape cases in the world and US for maximum female rapes. Have the CNN or BBC ever done lead on their own rape cases. This India covid coverage by them is as intentional as their rape reportage.
  • Lastly India supplying vaccines to the world is just not going down well with the west. At any cost they would like to wrest the capability and capacity from India sooner or later. First step towards it is this image damage.

Still what went wrong on our part that resulted in this current crisis.

  • We relaxed our guard going complacent when covid cases hit bottom. We got emboldened and did not learn our past lessons or others’ experiences.
  • We could have saved the vaccines for ourselves first. Charity begins at home. Our poor are the first neediest over foreign countries.
  • State Assembly elections could have been postponed. In 1980s, Tamil Nadu was under Governor rule for over 2 years after PM Rajiv Gandhi dismissed the ruling DMK stage government. So why not? In whose interests were the elections conducted.
  • Why was Kumba Mela cancelled only after assemblage of crores of devotees in these pandemic times. By the time the damage was done.
  • I did watch the massive massive West Bengal election rallies. I half expected this disaster like my fellow citizens. The scene was no better in Tamil Nadu.
  • In a controlled measure, the Indian economy was being opened up. I have attended weddings and parties too and flown to another city as well in this pandemic period but following complete covid safety protocol. But I gave the temple car festivals etc., a deliberate miss when thousands gathered throwing caution to winds. Why did our law enforcement allow this.
  • Who is really responsible for conducting of state assembly polls and ordering of Kumba mela in the first case. Was it the Election commission. On whose advice precisely.
  • BJP won their last Lok sabha elections easily on social media canvassing. What was the need for huge rallies now for assembly elections. Why could it not have been done via social media as it was done before.
  • Whoever is directly behind the current heartwrenching condition in the country, must harbour some accountability and responsibility and own up to the truth. This nightmarish situation could have been easily thwarted. We Indians were almost there before all hell broke lose – because of selfish manipulation by some political groups.
  • Families broken, lives lost, hopes dashed, livelihoods crushed… all for what? Is it just a collateral damage to some vested interests to score an election victory.
  • Corona does not discriminate dear Indian politicians. Just see the diamond capital of the world/India Surat. The chimney of the electric crematorium broke down when overloaded and overworked. Corona knows no geographical or religious boundaries. It has no age or social status or sex barriers.
  • Why was not the oxygen production boosted and hospital bed capacity increased after the first wave of covid. Why were life saving drugs superstocked. Why were exports allowed.

Finally guys, as I said, every dog has its day in the sun. Today happens to be your day.

Remember, India is one big nation, strong and proud. We are 1.3 billion. Whether UK or US just check your medical system. Over 30% of your medical staff are Indians by origin. Even NASA employs over 30% Indian scientists. We will spring back and will do good very shortly. We are super shock-absorbent as our history can reveal, and we are simply colossal for anything to jolt us – even if it means corona.

Whereas think of UK or Germany. Can get trounced in no time.

Every single nation in the world that is spewing venom on India and basking in our death and misery remember: one day you will be there too. Not that I wish for. If this can happen to a resilient India that can bounce back with an inherent strength, who can be spared.

Posted in Social

Indian Govt Please Fix The Software Glitch In Covid Vaccine Certification.

I used my Aadhar ID proof for my first dose of Covishield vaccine at a private hospital in Chennai. The certificate was downloadable from Aarogyasetu, the Indian govt app for Covid and also from Cowin website. My beneficiary ID was mentioned in the certificate alongwith my ID proof. Authentication was enabled with QR code scanning.

For my second dose, the hospital informed me that due to some technical glitch, my first used ID would be inadmissible. I was asked to submit a different ID proof. So I presented my Voter ID for final dose upon which I received an SMS alert that I was fully vaccinated with link for download. The latest and final dose vaccine proof certificate was also downloadable from Aaroyasetu apart from Cowin website as earlier. The only problem was that, in my first certificate, as per my Aadhar proof my name is complete with surname. In the second one, the beneficiary ID was different and the name of the vaccinated reflected my first name only without surname, based on my voter ID submitted. (Voter IDs generally give our first names and surnames separately)

Now there seems to be conflict between the two certificates as both mention two different IDs and beneficiaries. Year of birth however is the same although no complete date of birth is mentioned. Also the second and conclusive vaccination certificate proof carries my name without my surname as I have stated earlier. The regular ID most of us use is Aadhar. Voter ID or PAN Card or Driving Licence (DL) or even Passport are mostly viewed as supplementary IDs while Aadhar is mandatory everywhere. I am at a fix now therefore. Does this mean that I have to carry my voter ID as citizenship proof for my foreign travels to flash to the airlines or foreign immigrations. Normally I carry always my Aadhar ID. My passport name and my Aadhar name are identical whereas my voter ID drops my surname. How to prove to anyone that these are all my concrete ID proofs. Variation with my passport ID is a headache.

Hopefully Govt of India fixes this software glitch soon as I understand more number of the vaccinated are concerned about this conflicting certification. A friend who used same Aadhar ID for both doses says she received certification for the final dose that mentioned it as first dose once again.

Covid vaccine certification is going to play a big role in Medical Insurance/Health Insurance settlements in future. Therefore diligent care needs to be taken in certification with proper ID reference and beneficiary ID created for the purpose. One single ID must be taken into cognizance for both doses.

In my case, I wonder if it will be possible for me to correlate both the certificates. Can we add our Aadhar ID proof as well to the final certificate. After all this is digital certification. There must be someway to relate both certificates conclusively.

Lots of confusions persist.

Mostly those who are not concerned with foreign travel have not much to complain. In India, all ID proofs are valid generally.

But those of us who may need to travel abroad in future are now concerned as any name mismatching can put us into trouble leading to unnecessary quarantine procedures despite our vaccination. In short, the discrepancy can invalidate our vaccine certification.

I hope everyone pays attention to this vital info.

For second dose of your covid vaccine, please take a different ID compared to your first submitted ID. I suggest we can consider our passport ID for this purpose if we have travel in mind. Please do not present any ID that will be in conflict with your passport ID (for the final dose). As the final ID is what will reflect in our final vaccine certification, it will be prudent to present our passport ID for the second dose.

How to differentiate between the first and final dose vaccine certificates in India: The first dose certificate mentions the date for the second dose vaccination. If there is no such data in your certificate, then it must be the final certificate.