The thing is, only women from non Islamic countries serve as field nurses or nursing assistants in any part of the world. Right there the Paki nurse concept fails in the picture Tiger Zinda Hai. Islamic field nurses serving kafir patients must be blasphemy, right! Did the makers of ‘Tiger zinda hai’ realize that. You just committed a grievous one misters. Women nurses from islamic countries may be restricted to serving their own hospitals, and who knows in fact to only female patients. Mostly in Middle East, we see either Indian nurses or Filipino nurses or at least Sri Lankan nurses, none other. Even in India, it is rare to come across a muslim female nurse for the simple reason, the community may not be permitting them to serve non muslim patients. So 99.99% of the broadminded serving Indian nurses are either Hindu or Christian. I am yet to come across a muslim female nurse working for a medical hospital in India. I have to laud the Christian community in India for their service mindedness when it comes to working with the sick. As far as it comes to serving humanity in the most earnest way, I doubt whether muslims have such a generous big heart. To touch and clean a kafir male patient, hold his bedpan. Will a trained islamic field woman nurse do it. Can she do it. Can she change his dress and dressings.. Can she give him a sponge bath. Whole body bath. Just who are you kidding guys. Hindu Dharma and even Christianity for that matter, do not set boundaries when it comes to serving humanity. There is just no limit to serving mankind for us. Producer-director of ‘Tiger zinda hai’ – you made a complete and cruel mockery of one of the noblest professions of the world serving fellow humans who are suffering and who need a healing touch. Show me a single muslim woman staff nurse doing the kind of motherly-sisterly selfless humanitarian service to a kafir male patient. Interestingly, the contrary holds true. Non kafir male or female assistants and paramedics can nurse muslim men or women when they may be sick. One way road.
It is upsetting therefore to watch such white lies like: (praying) (here too!)(Tableeghi jamaat or what) Pakistani muslim women nurses cast on EQUAL FOOTING with serving Indian nurses working in a hospital in war torn region of Middle East. You cannot ridicule the sisterhood of Indian nursing community more. Outright assault on our entire medical fraternity and principles. Pakistanis are world renowned for taking lives, never for gifting life.
Secondly, our intelligence agency doing a job with theirs is insane, an insult to my India and especially our Kashmiris. Just read about a Kashmiri Hindu woman’s travails. How the Pathans came down in 1947 from Pakistan raping from home to home any and every Hindu Kashmiri little girl to granny. India has had a Mumbai 26/11 not long ago. A Kargil before that when our soldiers were captured, tortured to death with their bodies mutilated beyond recognition. India has also suffered multiple bomb blasts orchestrated by ISI in various cities including in our Stock Exchange and in business districts of busy metros. Even for making money across the border, one should not be making such thoughtless films. Oh, ‘Tiger zinda hai’ is not a thoughtless film. Probably it was made after considerable and careful thought to portray terrorists as good samaritans and plant a seed of self doubt and mistrust in the minds of the Indian masses. By whom? I am coming to that.
Thirdly, Cannot digest Pakistan flag flying level with ours. In a real life incident our ex Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj did rescue some 45 Indian nurses stranded in war torn parts of middle east. In which Pak had zero role to play. It is reckless and demeaning to credit Pak with anything as good as this one, even if this is just a picture.
Fourthly it means, the film must have been funded by the D gang from across the border, no second thoughts on that. You can guess from the casting crew: Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif. To paint a rosy picture of their terrorist intelligence agency, one must be hand in gloves with them. One of them. Why was the picture even released in India. How did our sensor board approve it.
What is the need to project our adversaries to this extent is what I cannot understand. More than trying to show them as THE BEST, the producers have gone to the length of showcasing their spies in good light.
You have to be sick for producing such a trash film, it’s an assault on our intelligence and I felt like puking. Bastards.
Finally showing our own Indian muslim in Salman’s team to be the ultimate sacrificing patriotic guy is the last straw. I do respect some (not all) Indian muslims, but any trust, I will not put in them. I am not comfortable with them. I tolerate because we have to be polite and civil to each other for the nation’s sake. Where such a decorum has to be maintained, and/or if situation demands, I will play up to my expected role.
As far as India is concerned, no combined effort on any front with Pakistan. Pak lies in history. We don’t want to have anything to do with them. Never.
‘Tiger zinda hai’ is out and out a terror project. I regret I had to see it. I regret watching this nonsense. GLORIFICATION OF TERRORISTAN, TERROR AND TERRORISM at its best.
Mahabalipuram aka Mamallapuram, mere 45 km from city, is city as well. Almost. The city expands upto here and further. In fact, the metrorail may be plying upto the sun-kissed dusty town in near future. Still Mahabalipuram is of Kanjivaram district I suppose for administrative reasons. Situated on the ECR (East Coast Road) enroute to Pondicherry (now Puducherry), the historic seaside maritime port is millennia old, having been a trading center for Tamils for centuries. More than six rock cut Pallava period Dravidian architecture temples here have been washed out into the sea from the shore. What remains as the Shore temple is from the 7th century CE. The Pancha Pandava Rathas, Arjuna’s Tapas all in the rock carvings (the Pandav chariot and the Arjuna tapas cave carved out of single rock formation) point to the existence and flourishing of a vibrant Hindu culture and art in the southern state from over two thousand years before. The Chinese and Romans were regulars trading with this part of India which is why there are Chinese figurines carved into cave temples in Mamallapuram.
This is the reason President Xi probably chose the scenic Mamallapuram for his informal rendezvous with Indian PM Shri Narendra Modi. Xi insisted on taking road to Mamallapuram from airport, turning down aerial transport because he apparently wanted to see this part of the country with his own eyes. I won’t say Chennai is beautiful but I would any day vouch Chennai has this ‘lakshanam’ – auspiciousness about it. Chennai does not have a soaring skyline like Noida or Bangalore or Mumbai and neither is Chennai swanky like Pune or Chandigarh or even curious and classy like Hyderabad or Delhi… Chennai is like one big overgrown village that’s all. It grows on you as and when you live here, never one for making a first and fast impression.
Chennai’s art and culture scene rocks! We could be aptly called the Cultural capital of India. Tamil Nadu is littered with ancient Hindu temples of Dravidian architectural style spreading acres, thousands of them, street to street. The state is a historian/archaeologist’s delight. A month long music season for classical Carnatic is still our annual feature that draws in fans from around the world. Birth place to classical dance form ‘Bharat Natyam.’ Many may not be aware that Kung Fu etc., the martial arts of China had a Hindu-Buddhist founder who originated from Tamil Nadu and migrated to China. While the martial art form died in India, it survived in China. The monk’s name was Bodhi Verman.
Chennai has given to the world not just the Google CEO Sundar Pichai and outgoing World Pepsico CEO Indra Nooyi, but also 3 times world chess champion Vishwanathan Anand to Tennis aces Ramanathan Krishnan (world junior Wimbledon champ of his times) and Ramesh Krishnan and Vijay Amritraj and Anand Amritraj. Chennai has produced Noble laureates and eminent scientists and mathematicians and scholars who have made good at global level. Chennai still keeps a low profile ! The best part that the Tamils have played in history is, being a quiet but stable and reliable and constant rock steady part to the idea of India. And this has nothing to do with our voting preferences. Tamils may not vote for the Congress or BJP over the regional Tamil parties, yet Tamils are most nationalistic by nature, and highly underestimated.
Ancient Hindu and especially Tamil Hindu contribution to the world is amazing. Our forefathers were creators, not destroyers and terrorists. They built huge architectural marvels of temples and universities, not mausoleums. India exported the best to the world, not terror and violence. Tamil society had structured grammar by 3rd century BCE and proper built dams (over Kaveri river that stand goods today, world’s first dam) with literary courts functioning in full flow.
Mamallapuram today stands a witness to this great glorious age of our ancient Hindu Tamil Kings who ran a reign of over 1000=2000 continuous years before their lineage came to an end. Pallava kings raised the Mamallapuram structures that are classified UNESCO World Heritage today. In Tamil Nadu, every street has an ancient temple that could be a world heritage site!
I would say, Tamil Nadu has this calming effect on anyone. Not impressive at the outset. People here are less agitated. I have heard north Indians give this opinion. We don’t have a pleasant climate. We are known for our humidity levels and sweaty weather. Yet Tamil Nadu is rated a good or perhaps the best place to live in or raise your children. One reason is, my state people respect law and order and try to follow it!!! Disciplined. Hardworking. Intelligent. These are the three words I would use to describe Thamizhs.
Mamallapuram to Chennaiites is weekend escape.
The last time I was in Mahabalipuram was just a year back. We girls chose a beach resort to unwind and swim (!) in their private beach closed to public.
The ECR is dotted with entertainment places. Pubs, discotheques, beach resorts, multi-cuisine restaurants that can cater to every taste bud… A pucca party place for the party animals. Pondicherry which is less than 100 km is Union Territory where they don’t levy excise duty on liquor. Hence the weekly drive to Pondy!!!
The ECR is also a very dangerous road to drive – known for drunk driving and accidents. Hundreds of casualty every year. I am never comfortable traveling down this road. Years back, this road had the first drive-in seaside cinemas. I watched the memorable picture ‘Bombay’ here curling up in the ground under the car in a cold month. Now the cinemas is in ruins but lots more different places have become fashionable and trendy spots.
Once upon a time, an uncle of mine owned acres of seaside property here that he later sold away for a pittance. Today this stretch leading upto Pondicherry is gold. I won’t say this is a scenic road – because sea view is hidden in most places by structures that have come up in between the sea and the road. Upto 1 km range of land distance from sea level is not approved by government after the Tsunami struck, but that has not dampened the real estate development. (Real estate growth is lukewarm nevertheless happening).
My first visit to Mahabalipuram was in standard 10 in 1984. ECR was a narrow spiraling road then with just a single lane. Every school girl’s first memorable excursion! I think we did not even own a camera then. We enjoyed the day the way one ought to enjoy outings!
Many Tamil pictures were filmed in this road and in the quaint beach resorts of those days that served as lovers’ secret meeting places.
We still take friends visiting us in Chennai to Mahabalipuram. There is a sculpture school there. Good food. Ideal place to spend a weekend. Luxurious beach villas and resorts. Some theme parks are closed, otherwise even for kids the ECR used to be a great stop. Free flow of liquor. A favourite with foreign tourists. The mix with culture makes it all heady!!! Two more attractions on the road before you reach Mahabalipuram: The Crocodile Bank and Dakshina Chitra (heritage architecture showcase).
Well, never expected our PM Modi to meet the Chinese prez Xi here. Hopefully the two drank in heartily from history. Every time I step into an ancient Hindu temple that is at least 1500 or 2000 years old, I think of the Hindu king who built the magnificent structure. For instance, the Brahadeshwara temple is even earthquake proof! You have to walk through these temples to be transported by the mind’s ‘Time machine’ into virtually another world and age.The Shore temple of Mamallapuram is an abandoned structure, no more a functioning temple. It is a miracle it was not affected by the Tsunami! Whenever I visit Mamallapuram, I picture artisans working on these great sculptures in the vibrant town of the Pallavas. In Brahadeshwara temple of Tanjore, nonstop Puja to Lord Shiva is going on for over 1000 years. Most Hindu temples in India are functional for two thousand years easily minimum. North could have had more but they were razed to dust by the Moghuls who raised their bloody mausoleums over our sacred places of worship.
The Shore temple of Mamallapuram is a rare one in that, Lord Shiva is seen here with family. Nowhere else in India can you see Shiva like a family man – mostly He is represented as Shiva Linga.
In Mamallapuram time does come to a standstill – at least for me. I have been here a dozen times, no more. But every time I step in here, I am drawn to this unbelievable proud native history of ours. Pristine. I almost feel a tear drop roll down my eyes. Moving.
As for China-India tie, India is NOT in contest with anyone. India has a soul, China lacks one. India is a time-tested people’s democracy. China is yet to take the acid test that it will fail miserably. The entire future of China may be incumbent finally on this one crucial step that someday China has to dare to take. Inevitable. People in India ACTUALLY LIVE. LIVE LIFE. We are happy the way we are in India. We shall progress at our own pace. We don’t want to saturate ourselves too soon the way China is going at it. Average Indian life holds good in the present. We Indians still throng temples and cinemas and attend concerts and go on holidays. Music is not only for stage performance. Music is for caressing our soul. Sports is not just for winning the Olympic medals. Sports is for our entertainment. That way, even India’s fixation with Cricket is good. Millions soak and enjoy these games. Which is more important to most Indians than winning medals like a machine without a pleasure. India can do better, no doubt, buts India is doing fine anyway.
China is this ruthless moneylender. China has swallowed African territories and even a Sri Lankan port city when they failed to cough up principal with compounded interest. China is modern day East India Company. India will hardly be ever that. INDIA REFUSES TO PROSPER ON OTHERS’ BLOOD, AT OTHERS’ COST. Us vs. Them. When we shed every moral and ethic in the code book, we can become China in no time too. Chinese eat rat and dog for main course. Can majority vegetarian India ever do that. Eat snakes? Do Europeans, Americans do that. Trivial it may sound, trivial it is not. This is the major existential social difference between India and China. Unbridgeable gap. India: Underdeveloped for a reason. Slow with a purpose. When you can eat man’s best friend the dog, then you will stop at nothing.
We were once taken for a ride by Mao Tse Tung. Xi or no Xi, INDIA DOES NOT AND WILL NOT TRUST CHINA. INDIA WILL NOT GIVE MORE MARKET ACCESS TO CHINA. INDIA WILL NOT BE DIRECTED OR CONTROLLED BY CHINA. INDIA REFUSES TO TOE THE CHINA LINE. INDIA DOES NOT CARE WHAT CHINESE MEDIA THINK OR HOW CHINESE MEDIA PORTRAY INDIA. INDIA WILL NOT JOIN THE SILK ROUTE. INDIA WILL NOT GIVE UP TIBET. INDIA WILL NOT GIVE UP AN INCH OF INDIAN SOIL TO CHINA. Full stop.
Prez Xi, we hosted you with respect because you were our guest. ‘Adhithi Devo Bhava’ – this is our culture. India can afford to antagonize China, India can live without China. India will.
I don’t want to dwell into morality, legality and ethics concerning PC, our ex finance minister now rotting behind the bars. Do not want to mix politics.
Just wondered how more useless all the wealthy hoardings of P Chidambaram and his son Karthi Chidambaram could get than this, when none of these managed to get the 74 year old senior citizen out of his Tihar cell that reportedly includes an unpartitioned (unscreened) squating toilet facility. Food is stated to be standard prison issue. No air-conditioner.
Is this what these guys worked so hard for … and then some… (!)
Kaliyug, where and when not even your Karma would wait to catch up with you in your next janam. Instant Karma means instance justice. Fast trial.
Time for reflection for the septuagenarian ex minister as well as his son who is in his prime. The family can only watch in agony.
“Gotra’ means clan (Kula) identification for Hindus. It means, an unbroken lineage of sons in the family tree (Y Chromosomes) from the Vedic times. Some say the practice of Gotra is for preservation of the Y chromosome with all its purity sans tampering/contamination in the Hindu society. Every family goes by a Kula-Gotra therefore among Hindus. Every family has a Kula Deivam (family deity). The Kula and Gotra are something that a Hindu inherits and/or acquires by birth (that alters with marriage in case of women).
Essentially all Hindus are supposed to have descended from the seven sages ‘Sapta Rishis’ (Brahma Maharishis) (direct disciples of Lord Shiva) (in the case of learned Brahmanas and north Indians), and their seers (in the case of south Indians and others). Every single family line traces back by ages and ages to one common ancestor, following the kula-gotra chart and map. Invasions unleashed a hell of disturbance but even through the foreign aggression, the Hindus continued the chain forward, may be at times, with missing links here and there. Those who mixed with invaders ceased to be Hindus, severely ostracized by the community. (The ex-communicated later became Muslims and Christians). (For instance, typically the Kashmiri Hindu pundits and baniyas wanted to return back to the Hindu fold someday after being force converted at the point of sword by Aurangzeb. Many surprisingly still retain their Hindu family names. However, they were refused re-admission to Dharma after the Moghul’s time).
Gotra and Kula Deivam therefore are our race and clan identities. They go back to our very roots and to the very beginnings of ancient Hindu/human civilization. No wonder India’s Hindu civilization is the only surviving, longest and continuous civilization in the world today. It is a mammoth, mammoth task keeping this ancient culture alive for over 10,000 years, most of it fairly in tact. How an entire landmass called Bharat Varshadopted and practised such a grand scheme of things averting inbreeding without a legal enforcement is astonishing. We Hindus of this 21st century are the descendants of Bharatha, ancestor to Pandavas and Kauravas of Mahabhaarath. ‘Bhaarath’ is the true and original name of India. ‘Hindustan’ was the name given by Islamic invaders from the Persian Gulf. The British rechristened us ‘India’ in a blatant attempt to kill our very character and soul.
Of course there were some strict norms voluntarily adhered to be each clan or Kula. These were slightly varied in the south compared to north. However extreme care was taken never to marry in the same bloodline and procreate. Did our Hindu forefathers foresee/witness any harmful genetic mutation and disorder when one married into the same kula-gotra.
Same Gotra marriages are frowned upon in Hinduism (entire north and in some sections of south) even today. First cousin marriage is strictly forbidden among Hindus, considered incestuous.But down south, if the gotras are different you can marry your (cross) cousin.For example, straight cousins cannot marry each other. Like the children of brothers. Children of sisters. But a brother’s son or daughter can marry his sister’s daughter or son. Cross cousin marriages are permitted because, the sister gets married and goes to another family/gotra. She assumes the gotra of her husband’s family tree. Her children born under new gotra in a strange family will be inheriting different gotra/Y chromosomes, not that of her parents. So the children can marry back into her parents’ family.
But north or south, not even the second cousin marriage is permissible between straight cousin (between children of brothers’ male cousins and children of sisters’ girl cousins). All straight cousins in north and (with cross cousin exemption) in south be it first cousins or second cousins or third cousins cannot marry.
My north Indian friends used to tease me relentlessly about this proven logic. They would be shocked by the south Indian custom that allowed cross cousin marriages. Generations of cross cousin marriages especially within a closed circle can be equally damaging as the Y chromosomes may return to the home family tree after a generation or two. But even these cross cousin marriages mostly stopped with the last or my generation. Not many of my parents generation had cross cousin marriages. One of my friends married her cross cousin. In my generation it was minimal, almost non existent. Now it is totally off. Full stop. Whether it is love marriage or arranged marriage in India, we can be more than certain that there is not the least chance of someone marrying from within the same gotra. We have outgrown that custom in south for our own sake. Awareness of genetic health issues made it possible for south Indians to put an end to cross cousin marriages as we have been a lot more literate for ages compared to north. We needed no written law.
Why were the same kula-gotra marriages prohibited in Hinduism. This is the scientific reason as researches have established in modern times: Straight cousin marriages will lead to harmful gene mutations and congenital birth defects thereby. For ‘vamsavridhi’ or for the family clan to grow, ancient Hindus wanted their offsprings to marry outside their home families into other blood lines so that the gene pools could get freshly recharged.
Cross cousin marriages where the gotra changes for daughters of the family after marriage were considered relatively safer which is why they were allowed down south.Even in south, straight first cousin marriages are considered taboo and incestuous.In north one hundred percent, first cousin marriages are prohibited even today. If you marry a woman of same gotra, it may imply you are marrying like your own sister because you and she may have descended from the same gene pool whose protagonist Alpha male originally could be the same ancestor. It is like blasphemy therefore for Hindus to marry cousins. Honour killings have been reported from states like Hariyana where the same gotra girl and boy married (in the case of love marriage).
Those who have lost track of their gotra (like for instance in Tamil Nadu), use broader terms like ‘Shiva’ gotra and ‘Vishnu’ gotra.Even in this case, marrying someone with the same Kula Deivam is considered taboo and incestuous and both the boy and the girl may be deemed to have been offspring of the same family tree – with a common ancestor. So this is carefully avoided. Where your gotra cannot distinguish you, your Kula Deivam can.
With the help of the Kula Deivam orientation therefore, one can still decipher one’s gothra if the kula history is studied carefully and in detail.
Similarly many families also seem to have lost track of their ‘Kula Deivam’ – in which case their gotra may come to their help to get their bearings. To those who have ‘lost’ their Kula deivams, Lord Balaji of Tirupathi comes to rescue. Down south, anyone who cannot trace their Kula deivam can adopt Lord Venkatachapathi as their Kula deivam. Or Subramanya.
Ancient Hindus thus devised foolproof means to keep track of their pedigree genes, avoiding marrying into the same family tree. They double-checked and cross-checked the race and blood purity following the tabs such as Kula Deivam and Kula Gotra. Those families who have knowledge of both their gotra and Kula Deivam in the present times are indeed very fortunate. But even if you cannot track one of the two – the Kula Deivam or your gotra – it is still fine. Overlapping is averted at various levels of check.
To break it down to simple terms,
A boy and girl who intend to marry cannot be of the same Kula Gotra by birth
A boy and girl who intend to marry cannot be of the same Kula Deivam family by birth
Both cases are mutually exclusive. This is the secret and logic behind the Hindu genealogy that is in force for millennia from long since before words like DNA and Y Chromosome came into existence and became fashionable. Inbreeding eliminated maximum if not completely.
India’s population is one billion plus. It is amazing that we discovered and mastered and in fact excelled in a way our gene mapping technique, and our ancestors preserved the genetic chain in tact for millennia without a text book reference. Neither did they go for patenting their find. There was no terminology such as ‘Y’ chromosome or for that matter ‘X’ chromosome. How they had the clue yet to go to lengths to preserve the Y chromosome chain is unbelievable. How they worked it all out so perfectly is amazing. Even after millennia, in this 21st century, if you are a Hindu by birth, then you can safely claim that you are a pedigree with no mixed blood. Conversions to Hindu Dharma are happening for last 50-60 years only and now of course, the Dharma has a hearty worldwide following. The gene pool preservation of the Hindu race is matchless in history. No written laws were formulated. No code of conduct to abide by. This is just a brilliant network of our awesome Hindu ancestors trying to save their gene pool from any contamination. Think of the enormous discipline that this might have necessitated. The penalties were simple but rigorous: those who violated the kula-gotra norm were treated as outcasts never allowed into Hindu fold ever again. Looking back one wonders at the scientific precision of such a gene preservation strategy.
Same gotra marriages are tolerated these days, true. Hindu girls are pricey who the Indian Christians and Muslims chase. Mainly for the precious gene. Imagine the havoc this can wreck in the carefully constructed Hindu genealogy.
Today’s youngsters hardly understand the dynamics behind the Hindu Kula-Gotra science and set-up.
We don’t know what future has in store for us Hindus. It took millennia to build such a beautiful catacomb of a pedigree gene structure. It may take only a generation to break it all up to smithereens.
Hindus are not racists. It is however in our self-interest to preserve our pedigree gene pool for our very survival. If, for instance,you take the Indian muslims, they have been marrying first cousins and procreating for generations. A lot about their Y chromosomes may have altered getting mixed up, inbred at every generation. (You see Imran Khan’s Mongolian face (!) (from the Indian subcontinent)). No wonder they (our bhais) have rates (cash rewards) reportedly for bagging a Hindu girl as shocking media news have revealed.By marrying the Abrahamics and procreating, the Hindus will lose the most precious gift of all that has been passed over generations, over thousands of years, nurtured and harvested painstakingly by our forefathers.
While on our way to weekend grocery shopping last evening, my hubby at the wheels asked me if I had come across even a single death procession in the Middle East in all these years. I said, ‘No.’ For that matter, I told him neither had we witnessed a death procession in Malaysia that was our place of residence for four years. How come I never thought of it for so long!
Death is a big matter in India. Processions for the dead are very common that may block traffic. It is a very macabre thing to write about I know, but I thought I have to write it down. Today happens to be Mahalaya Amavasya, which is special for Hindu ancestors. Millions around the country take a dip in our holy rivers and offer ‘tharpana’ in memory of their forefathers.
I was raised in a very shielded secure world until my mother passed away when I was still in school. Until then, I had only heard about death and had seen a few processions on my way back from school that would totally scare me. My mother would tell me, they were taking ‘kanmoodi swamy’ in procession. Means, God with closed eyes. To us Hindus, the dead immediately transform into God. We forget what kind of humans they were in their lifetimes. Once a person passes away, we celebrate the dead as God. We forgive their misdoings. Only the good things about them are to be highlighted and remembered. We also have annual rituals commemorating the dead in our families. Failing to honour the dead with appropriate religious rites may incur their wrath and we could get cursed with ‘pitru dosham.’ That is why we feed the crows everyday in our terraces, believing they are our ancestors waiting for our food!
Until the ’80s, the dead used to be carried on shoulders by minimum four men (relatives) for cremation. Whatever the distance (may be 3-4 km). Hindus do not have casket. Hindus lay their dead on coconut palm mat that is spun between two bamboo poles that the pallbearers have to carry. One can see this in Bollywood films. Even in modern times, this one ritual has not changed. The open procession could be a shocker to little children in those days.
Now no more it is so. Things changed by late ’80s. By then the black van had arrived on the scene. Plus the freezer facility. For even cremation now, we have only electric crematorium. No more wood burning.
The black vans get replaced by even more grander carriers in Chennai these days. With seating arrangement etc. Playing up to the gallery. Quite a show. Death is no more so raw as in my mother’s times. To a significant degree, the effect stands muted today.
Big send off to the dead. Ceremonial. Obstructing traffic. Drawing unnecessary public attention.
What irritates me most is how these processions hinder traffic in the metro. Many times when I would be on my way somewhere, the mourners also happened to throw rose petals etc., into the auto (rickshaw) i had hired. It is such a disturbance to our peace of mind. Mood spoiler. Especially if you are on way to temple, etc. There are some processions with even band !!! Can’t get gross than this!
I wonder why are we Indians like this. Why can’t we do anything quiet. The black vans and other death vans are prominent in the city roads almost every single day. Chennai’s population is 10 million approximately. You have to book for cremation immediately when death occurs, if you want it in time! And don’t forget to take the Aadhar card of the deceased to the crematorium!!! Nothing less is admissible!
There are many things we can learn from others. Out of which, we have to learn first how to behave at death. How to quietly mourn the passing away of a dear one. How to give some dignity to the dead. How to conduct ourselves with dignity.
In lower middle class Indian homes (labour class), the men take to the bottle after cremation . To relieve their pain. What about the ladies. Men can pee wherever they want, men can booze to relieve their stress, however women have to be that strong pillar to take in everything and remain standing, upholding the family tree and customs and traditions is it!
A 10 to 16 day ritual then follows in Hindu homes after someone’s passing. Highly religious. Then a monthly observance as per Hindu calendar. And then finally an annual remembrance – with all the spiritual significance.
I am told, our ancestors live in us. Right. My gene may be millennia old but I am essentially of the same stock that my ancestor was a 1000, 2000 years ago. I owe them that much. And especially if you are a follower of Dharma, it means your bloodline is pedigree and not corrupted for centuries, millennia. Conversion to Hindu Dharma is happening only since the last 100 years or so. Hindus are thoroughbred carefully for eons, generations which makes us unique and special. We have our ancestors to thank for such a thoughtful cultivation and preservation of the Hindu gene. Kula Deivam (family deity) for most Hindu families also may be some long lost ancestors. This is where remembering our forefathers has its relevance.
There are friends and relatives who have donated cows in memory of the dead to ensure heaven to their dear departed family members. I could only think of the calf the cow was separated from. There are those who went to Varanasi (Kashi) in the north and Rameshwaram in south Tamil Nadu to immerse the ashes in river Ganga and in the Indian Ocean. How much the dead were showered with love and respect in their own lifetimes is a million dollar question.
We Hindus also mourn for an year someone’s passing. We do not celebrate Diwali or observe any ‘vrath’ until the first year Devasham or Sraartham (annual religious commemoration). It is a must for us. We are not supposed to even wear new clothes in this one year period, but it is no more so for last many years. In digital age, a lot has changed in our society. Still, there is something that still needs a thinking-over.
Why is death so much observable in Indian roads. Why is that we have never seen death in other countries of our residence. And why do we Hindus have to appease our ancestors after they leave us, when we so much displease them when they are alive and kicking in our midst.
Don’t others have families too. Don’t they miss or mourn their beloveds. Are we Indians the only ones with emotions. Why are we overdoing even such a thing as close and intimate and personal and private like death in the family. How can we even make this a public affair by obstructing traffic. Why should others even know about our grief. Why should others suffer for our loss. Others totally unconnected to us.
I am proud of my Hindu roots, but there is a lot we Hindus can learn from others about life and death. Why can’t we just GO quietly. In peace. Om Shanthi!
Daughters may be denied the last rites as sons, but daughters can still fulfill their longings by giving their beloved parents and forefathers the respects they deserve at Kashi and Rameshwaram and Gaya. These are the only shrines/holy places in India that allow Hindu women to belatedly offer ‘tharpanam’ to their ancestors with/without an intermediary. These places are in my bucket list. There is also the Shraddha Perumal temple at Nenmeli, near Chennai that serves the same purpose.
Imran Khan, the Pak PM demonstrated at the UN why Pakistan is a failed state. He wasted the precious UN time alloted to his nation (the bill footed by his tax paying citizens) by hate-mongering and talking s**t about India that nobody around the world gives a damn about (was he stoned?). Given his/his nation’s credibility. Looks like he had to time-pass, that he did at the expense of India especially of Kashmir that is part and parcel of Indian union. Chiefly because, there is nothing substantial to talk about his terroristan, aka Pakistan. What should have been utilized for bringing forward nation building agenda in an international platform was squandered miserably by Khan which explains why Pakis are in such a frustrated and desolate state today.
But then had he been any better, Mr. Khan would not have gone for a third wife in his sixties, marrying (seducing) a grandmother and mother to 5. Thus drain his energies, if any. What is left over is what Pak probably deserves. This nonsense. Not a word about the growth and prosperity of his nation. Not a word on how he planned to tackle poverty or fight terrorism. Not a word as to how he would make every Pakistani proud someday. Most of them Pakis when they cross their borders feign even their nationality. Unabashedly in foreign soil, many Pakistanis lie they are Indians to gain respect and acceptability.
More deplorable is Pak media journalists. Shame on them for hailing Imran Khan’s speech. What do you stand to gain, buddy. If I were you, i would be shell-shocked that the global representative of my nation misused valuable productive time in UN gossiping about neighbour. I would rather have wanted to talk about my own growth story, my plans, my ways and means. Of course, it goes without saying, Imran Khan;s speech was scripted by his military and spy agency in whose hands he is a puppet.
Reportedly Imran Khan was sulking in desperation watching ‘Howdy Modi’ on his (tiny cubicle of) hotel room tv after receiving a doormat (red carpet) welcome from his minister Qureshi minus any foreign dignitary. Of course, he flew a charity flight sponsored by Saudi to go to America.
Successful people and nations do not air grudge or grouse in public. They are after solutions. If something does not work out, they are also quick to move on to other things.
In contrast PM Shri Narendra Modi used his US visit to capitalize maximum for India and Indians. His approach was 100% positive and his interactions at global level will stand India in good stead in the long run. Every single minute in the American soil counts.
India’s PM Shri Narendra Modi ji remarkably made zero mention of Pak at UNGA because Pakistan is not our standard reference. Pakistan is not our agenda or mission or our last stop. India is much larger than Kashmir or Pakistan or whatever. This is called ‘Cosntructivism.’ (my lingo!) India would rather use international fora for forwarding our own growth stories and benefit in exchange from others’ experiences.
Just heard Pakistan PM Imran Khan admitting in UNGA that Pak trains terrorists. Official statement by Pak premier at the United Nations. Indians have this habit of looking back at Pak that we must desist from now on. We are not them – the only reason we do look back is that, we speak the same language somewhat and there is some shared history.
Looks like Imran Khan is justifying terrorism to me. To go a step further, looks like he is blackmailing the entire world with terrorism. He is trying to explain at the UN the desperate condition of the failed state called Pakistan.
India’s goal or target is not Pak. Should it be so, we wouldn’t be here today in world stage.
A BIG NO TO PAKISTAN AND BANGLADESH EVEN ON ‘BUY ONE GET ONE FREE’ OFFER !
India will not give up an inch of Jammu and Kashmir which is ours legally. We will take back POK some day and we will not stop short of that. But not an extra inch of Pakistan India is after – sorry, no thanks !
Pakistan may try any means to denounce India and Kashmir, but India will deal with it in its own way, reserving the right to choose the time and place to our convenience. After all they say, revenge is best served cold. Very recent example: Balakot.. India is that slow and steady but steadfast Elephant. The elephant memory is very sharp. The Indian elephant will never fail to watch over anything and everything. The Indian elephant will neither forgive nor forget.
Pakistan and Bangladesh are a blessing in disguise for Indian nation. Past Karma? Pakistan came into force to serve as a buffer state-shock absorber saving us Bharatwasis from some mad dogs! India also can do without the Bangladeshi vermin! Well, that’s how I see things!
India will not misuse UN to air our private and personal or pet peeves. India will use UN only as a platform to reach various levels and as a window to connect to the rest of the world. UN to India is a serious international mission that must not be squandered and wasted the way Pakistan’s Imran Khan did with it in his session. Let us build a better world at the UN rather than dig up graves!
Watched this second world war picture ‘Unbroken’ based on real life story of American military man Louie Zamperini. No idea who the cast were.
Louie is an Olympic athlete representing America in the 1936 games. Later his flight with Phil, Mac and other military men crashes. The duo Louie and Phil survive a grueling and record 47 days baked and famished, adrift in the ocean before being saved (?) by the Japanese military.
The land is no better as the two men discover. ‘The bird’ as nicknamed by the POW American soldiers, is in charge of their garrison. The Japanese man exhibits a sadistic streak isolating Zamp and taking his wrath out on him repeatedly, trying to break his spirit. As the war is drawing to a close, the jail warden fails to break Zamp who undauntedly challenges the cruel Japanese in his own way. From getting battered and bruised for no reason to working the coal mines of Japan to lifting heavy iron bars, Louie’s mental strength is stretched maximum to break his spirit. His stamina, pretty impressive! Without such a stamina to match his unyielding willpower, our hero would have been lost. May be it got to do with his Olympic training. The one and a half month in the sea must also have hardened our man. When all ploys fail, Zamp is tempted with bribes that could change his plight overnight. Louie Zamperini refuses to bow down, remaining strong until the end.
Reminded me of our own national hero Abhinandan who with his MIG downed the F16 flewn by Pak airforce man in the aftermath of Balakot. How proud he made India!
War is over and the the prisoners of war return to America after the ordeal. Louie and Phil get married and have families, remaining friends life long. Louie turns to god as he discovers peace in forgiveness over revenge. He realizes his dream of running in Tokyo Olympics in grand old age (his 80s). He makes peace with his former Japanese captors but Bird still refuses to see him. The film ends here.
War pictures are not my cup of tea. However this one was different. No explicit brutal war scenes that could make one flinch.
War is not rosy.
I only have this question to ask America. So you know war brutality. Still why do you force it on so many nations. How much more oil do you want. I can say this because I am an unbiased Hindu from neutral India. I am neither a muslim nor a christian both by race and/or religion. I belong everywhere and nowhere. I also know that, none can play games with my strong India. That gives me a sense of security.
Hollywood may make a war picture like this one, but Japan won’t. I have never seen a picture on Hiroshima Nagasaki bombings that wiped millions in a flash of a second. There have been Pearl Harbour, The Schindlers’ List etc., etc. They have been good. But nothing from Asian perspective. A coin has two sides.
They say all is fair in war and love.
Neither the First world war nor the Second world war concerned most other nations, especially Asian. As if India’s 1000 year siege under the islamic invaders and the British was inadequate, these wars were unnecessarily inflicted upon us. India was robbed totally by the Brits and left threadbare. And today these guys have the audacity to talk about immigrants. How about returning our stolen Kohinoor diamond Queen Elizabeth? Only UK can royally boast the loots from Asia and Africa with such a misplaced pride. And now a phony care for wildlife. After shooting to extinction nearly most of the world’s exotic species in African and Indian wilds. Natives have always lived with wildlife. Never hunted them down.
As for America, I wonder how many Americans ponder over the Indians wiped out entirely – ethnic cleansed to some ninety nine percent. Who will make films on the Red Indians. Or Aborigines of Australia. Or the Maoris of New Zealand.
Sorry, such pictures still fail to move me. Pretty much like Louie Zamperini, I remain untouched! But I respect the fierce individual spirit of Zamp. This is what captivated me most about the picture. What he endured, how he endured. First of all there was no self-pity. There was no question of giving up on life. His survival was a constant factor. You knew that from his attitude. Revenge lay in mere staying alive, a fellow American POW in Tokyo tells Zamp in their camp. How true. Living well is the ultimate tit-for-tat.
In a nation that is re-discovering our lost identity since Independence from the British, after a terror reign of nearly 800 years under the Moghuls etc., India is only now picking up pieces and trying to move on. War movies therefore have least effect on me.
Sometimes I feel even a sense of anger when I watch such pictures. The goodness of it all, I appreciate. But not having the courage or honesty to tell the whole or entire story comes as a big disappointment. But then after all, history is scripted by winner with additions and deletions replete. Although Zamp impressed me with his physical stamina and mental strength, Bird earned my respect as well, refusing to see Zamp on reconciliation. Japan had much, much to lose.