Posted in Pictures Foreign

Review: Crazy Rich Asians

Watched this sweet Chinese romance this forenoon. Almost felt like my fave M&B paperback.

First of all I want to raise a point here. What is this term ‘Asian.’ By Asian, mostly in America, they mean Chinese. America also clubs India, Pakistan calling us ‘South Asia’ as if we lack our identity. We are of the Indian subcontinent. Don’t America put us on the same board as Pakis, calling us Indians South Asians. In UK, the grooming gangs of Brit teen girls are Paki muslims not Indians or Chinese or Japanese. The UK media refers to these criminal gangs generally as ‘Asian.’ It is insulting.

So the title made me wonder which Asian this was about.

Also mostly the Chinese are stereotyped as the Kungfu type martial arts people. Their films are monotonous right from the times of Bruce Lee. Jackie Chan confirmed albeit with a difference what was chinese all about. So I was hardly prepared for this picture.

The film is completely shot in Singapore. I have been as a tourist in Singapore for more than a week over twenty years back. That Singapore is now history as I can see. The picture is a recent one – from 2018. Twenty years is a long, long time.

But I have to say, still a lot about Singapore may not have changed especially concerning their street food, train and taxi services and pan Asian culture. I saw a very few other faces than chinese in the film. It does no justice to the inherent multi-cultural set-up of Singapore. Leave alone representation.

Rachel, a chinese american professor with New York University follows her singaporean chinese boyfriend to the island nation to attend a family wedding of his. The infamous Asian snobbishness greets her to her dismay. It is chinese in the picture. It could have been Indian. Such a typical Asian mentality i must say! Omg, have I not been through this grind, married for over a quarter century! Is my family any different! I can author a book on the subject!

Whether Indian or Chinese, we have our way of forcing our dreams and ambitions on our children. I am sorry to admit this is exactly how Indian society is. Our children are not our property. We never realize this and take them for granted. We refuse to give them space and allow them to grow independently. Well this is one side of the coin.

During my four year residence in Malaysia, I have met with equally ambitious chinese parents like Indians. It used to surprise me always. I used to think back then, we Indians found our match only in the chinese! Our cultural values may be different but also somewhat similar in many ways. The elderly dominating the family, the family molding young minds from a tender age grooming them for a future business or profession, arranged marriages, marriages of convenience, extraordinary importance accorded to academics, etc., etc.. South Indians are less muted, but our north Indian brothers and sisters are boisterous like, nobody can enjoy life like them if you ask me. The world thinks we Indians and Chinese hardly enjoy life, but it is so much untrue. Our north Indians have to compete with the chinese on equal footing when it comes to partying! Again, i have been in Malaysia for four chinese new years. From casinos to local pubs to flashy cars, the chinese way of life used to completely amaze me. May be because who i saw then were Malaysian chinese not mainland chinese. Even their supper and dinner rituals every evening used to be a gala event. Every single day it happened without a break. Work hard in the day. Party hard at night. Booze flowed yet for not a single day, the chinese reported late for work. Something Indians can never ever manage. The significance and respect the chinese attached to wining and dining was a surprise to me in those days. Food and eating together were revered not to be disturbed for any reason! Most of our friends then were chinese who came home. It was an other world totally! I never got confused with Li or Chin or Lai or Cheng! Neither did they all look the same!

The kind of crazy rich chinese as in the film, I can imagine. We have such old rich families in India too. They don’t belong in our universe.

I liked the fact that young Rachel cared nothing for Nick (her boyfriend)’s family background. She was clear about what she wanted. She was mature enough to give him up to his mean mother on moral highground. That was stupendous. Her strength of character and integrity touched a chord in me. As she and her friend aver, sometimes some of us have just that left with us- those of us bereft of a family background and social circle that come by default of birth to the lucky few. No we don’t have to wait for anyone’s acceptance where we may never belong in a million years!

In my Malaysian days I knew many hardworking middle class chinese as well. The chinese women especially were very smart. When it came to money matters, the chinese were very shrewd. Corporate empires to side walk cafes, the chinese ran everything as family enterprise. Family restaurants were popular in Malaysia. The families worked as a single unit. I only once told them about my vegetarian habits and how for me, even the cooking pan has to be fresh. They kept it in their memory for our entire period of residence. Father was the chef and daughter was the waitress. Billing was by the son and the wife dishwashed. The chinese family values used to be so much like Indian even if the chinese were more westernized. One thing that cannot happen with Indians is this westernization!!! The south east Asians like the chinese and thai are easiest to adapt to the western influence and culture. Yet like us Indians having Ayurveda, the chinese took only their own herbal medicine. Their cuisine was as indigenous as our Indian. The contradictions were interesting!

The single mother of Rachel who brought up her daughter all alone by herself – this is again a very common chinese trait. Many of their families break up. Loose morality and alcohol are the reason although some may think I am cheeky to say that. But it is the truth. We have this single mother condition now in India too. Very brave and intelligent and hardworking women these single mothers are! However, the joint family sentiments are no exaggeration either. Joint family system is the very fabric of Asian societies be it Indian or Chinese or Japanese. Only in recent times we are having nuclear families. In fact for filing IT returns, we Hindus still have a category named HUF (Hindu Family) – where we can file tax as a single unit. This applies to joint family businesses where brothers may be carrying on traditional trades jointly for ages. Even cousins and extended families for generations may come under a single HUF umbrella. Even now this is common scene in India. Only business families can understand this custom and this breeding culture. Outsiders generally won’t. I am not blaming Rachel here but it is not easy for anyone to get a sense of this mindset unless you live this life.

After a long time I was kind of transported to Malaysia! A male chinese colleague of my husband used to get me my veggie ‘kuihs’ every evening from  kampongs (villages) that were tucked in too interior. The dumplings we make in India by name ‘modak’ (kozhukattai in Tamil) but we don’t stuff non-veg filling. Some similarities there. Then the rice eating country people! I used to identify more with South East Asians like Malays, Chinese, Thai, Indos over the wheat eating north Indians for this single reason: they ate lots of rice like us south Indians!!! They can’t do without rice totally! Chinese are also much more than ginseng and fried rice and jasmine tea. And mathematics! There is a humane side to them that is hardly portrayed rightly in films/media. Fortunately, I have seen that side of theirs in Malaysia.

The bachelorette and bachelor parties are now common even in India. Once reserved for the well-off, now getting popular with the middle-class. The richie rich can get away with anything stupid literally. Why can’t we follow just the good things for a change from the west. Why do we have to ape their worst habits. The big, fat Indian weddings are worldwide popular. This film is centered around one big fat chinese wedding. Obscenely extravagant. Somehow I believe in nice warm and cosy marriages not in pompous weddings. Haven’t lavish weddings become showcase of one’s social status. Once upon a time on earth, character and wisdom made masses look up to someone as role models. Today money power is what buys one societal respect and recognizance sadly.

The curse of Asia is: the rich and the poor live side by side without any qualms. You can see dirt poor being the next door neighbour of the stinky rich. I respect the dignity in some poor people and not-so-rich who hold their head high come what may. It won’t take some of us more than a minute to tick someone off for their boorish, haughty attitude who think they are good because of their material possessions and ‘birth conenctions’ but we keep our ground for peace’ sake and for sanity’s sake. It is not worth it.

Finally all is well that ends well. Fairy tale wedding that left me with a good aftertaste! The cast is perfect. Light dreamy magical story. Made my sunday! I must say, our Asian guys have to have some guts and stop being Mamas’ boys!!! Sigh!



Posted in Political

The Trail Of Terror

I like and believe (in)this man. RVS Mani. India is in dire need of real life heroes like Shri Mani. Hats off to you sir, for your selfless service that can endanger your very life.

On Pak pumping fake currency into India: this is awful. equally worse as terror. trying to derail the Indian national economy:

I have always wondered how if it wasn’t for Kasab, the Mumbai terror attack 26/11 could have been pinned on India and Hindus. With some local helping ofcourse even if the mastermind remained across the border. Perhaps Allah saved Kasab to tell the true story to the world. This is nothing but Karma.

I would like to add a point to the second video. Not only in Kerala, please Mr. Mani make a video on mind-boggling real estate amassing in ECR (East coast road) in Chennai by a specific community in last two decades, as well. An unusual international ‘religious’ conference was held here some years back that raised many eyebrows. Green flags flew from every pole for miles. Most of this stretch is unaffordable for those with hard earned white money. The role of hawala/black money here seems alarming. A thorough investigation required.

Koodamkulam protest was funded by foreign NGOs (one biriyani packet and one hundred rupees for every protester per day) and even recently the Sterlite Industry in Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu had to close down because of the church’s direct involvement in the protests and funding from christian missionaries. Nuns in their frocks were seen holding placards and provoking mobs. This is public knowledge. Once industries close, in despair the masses may be driven in to the open arms of the rice bag conversion missionaries in the state. Keeping the state backward and impoverished works best for the church. Classic method for conversion. No doubt the CAA protests were similarly funded from overseas.

Role of Christian missionaries in Sterlite protests

Interestingly, it was the then PM Dr Manmohan Singh who was concerned of foreign NGO funding against the Kudankulam plant.

Every Indian citizen must watch these videos to learn the truth. Without prejudice, this honest man deserves an impartial hearing.

Posted in Food For Soul

Why Me?

Do we ever ask God, ‘why me’ when She showers on us Her choicest blessings.

Why ask ‘why me’ when it is time for a little test of our patience, faith and mettle.

For Vishu/Tamil New Year, we have the custom of offering for Puja and spreading a family feast of sweet, sour and bitter dishes. Veppam kozhundhu – the bitter neem finds a place alongside sweet jaggery and sour mango in our festive menu. It is not without a reason. It is symbolic of one’s life cycle. Upswings and downswings, the good and the bad, the right and the wrong, happiness and heart break are phases of life. When we never question ‘why me’ in moments of sheer bliss, why complain when it is time for self-introspection.

This too shall pass. After peaking highs, new lows are the laws of nature. Accepting God’s will and submitting at and surrendering to Her Lotus Feet one hundred percent may mark a milestone in one’s spiritual journey.

May Mother Goddess give us the strength and willpower to sail through challenging winds of time. Short-cuts to evade one’s Karma can only rejig the balance sheet. The shortfall will have to be met with and made good somehow, somewhere. If not today, then tomorrow. How many ever janams it might take. One can reschedule and postpone Karma not outwit it totally.

Posted in Pictures Desi

Review: Queen (Tamil Web Series)

Queen (Tamil Web Series) is on MX Player.

Directed by Gautam Menon (No.1 copycat and idea thief from Hollywood and crypto (?) christian allegedly responsible for maximum conversion to Christianity along with actor Joseph Vijay in Tamil film industry), starring Ramya Krishnan as Jayalalitha…. yes, this is supposedly the life story of the most beloved woman from Tamil Nadu by the masses, our ex-CM Jayalalitha Jayaram, who died an untimely (and an unnatural?) death just a couple or more years ago…

Eyes pregnant with tears, i am glued to my screen even though most of JJ’s private life was public as well. Her rise from stardom to the state politics. Her topping the entire state in the school final SSLC board exams, her reluctance to join the showbiz world, her short lived love story, her gradual climb to power with authority and strength… We will never see a woman like her for a long time… I missed Indira Gandhi mostly. In fact it was a working day for us in our school when Mrs. Gandhi got assassinated. But what I missed about Indira Ji, I caught up with in JJ. She was the one and only queen. Queen of the masses. Intelligent, shrewd, with an inborn compassion for fellow women. She did not bow down to anybody. May be that cost her her life who knows.

As ever, I got my first opinion on JJ from my maternal granny. I think she attended JJ’s ‘Bharatnatyam’ arangetram (south classical dance debut stage performance) at RR Sabha in Mylapore. The function was presided over by thespian Tamil actor Shivaji Ganesan, reigning hero of silver screens at par with MGR in those days. Shivaji referred to Jayalalitha, the 15 year old, as ‘thanga padhumai’ (golden doll) that made to headlines in Tamil dailies like ‘Dina Thanthi’ then. Her first film happened almost immediately. This interesting snippet was missing in Queen although i do not expect the director to cover all grounds. Supposedly, JJ’s dance recital pictures in black & white were splashed in Tamil magazines and newspapers that won her her entry into the tinsel world.

Jayalalitha was a contracted actor working with M G Ramachandran, popularly known as MGR, who became Tamil Nadu’s chief minister in 1977. Before her for MGR, there was Saroja Devi, and after her there were Manjula and Latha. MGR’s ‘contracts’ were ‘popular’ indeed. It was also common knowledge that Jayalalitha’s impending marriage to Shobhan Babu, Andhra actor, was done away by MGR. JJ was manipulated throughout her life. First it was her mother who stage-managed her, then it was her co-actor MGR before she fell into the hands of some ‘vested interests.’

Shobhan Babu passed away a few years before JJ. Every time I pass his house and his bust (what for??), i can’t help thinking of his love affair with Jayalalitha in the ’70s. In fact on his demise, I half-expected JJ to turn up for his funeral. No chance, still. There was and is a secret love child, now into her 40s, as grapevines had/have it. Shobhan became one more man who hardened Jayalalitha into toughest woman with his cowardice.

JJ’s relationship with MGR may have been an open book but looking at the old black & white and colour pictures that came later, the bond that they shared is pretty evident. There is more than hero worship in JJ’s eyes for MGR. True, she had none to blame. Much of her pain and suffering was self-inflicted. After Vaijayanthi Mala, Rekha and Hema Malini from Tamil Nadu who graced Bollywood, it should have been Jayalalitha next before Sri Devi’s turn. Reportedly she turned down a Raj Kapoor offer on MGR’s diktat. MGR could have made a star out of JJ, but she also in turn seems to have paid a heavy price. A stint in Bollywood could have changed Jayalalitha’s life completely freeing her from MGR’s clutches.

I have no memory of JJ’s film life. By mid ’70s she was already out of films entering the next phase of her life. But it was the time when I discovered pictures. The earliest memory of mine about Jayalalitha is her appointment as propaganda secretary for ADMK. We had a maid in our house when I was a little girl. She was smitten with MGR those days. I remember her spinning colourful tales to me and my sis from MGR picture stories as she hounded the cinemas almost every week. Almost always the heroine of the subject would be Jayalalitha. My fondest memory is pleading our teenage maid to tell us the story of ‘Kannithai’ (virgin mother). Many many more films of those times. This might have been between 1972-1978 )ofcourse by 1978 MGR was already the CM and JJ had quit films since long). This is how Jayalalitha became familiar to me at a very young age. I hadn’t watched a single film of her until we bought our own tv (in 1977) but I had listened to her film stories from a huge fan of hers describing to me scene by scene, dialogue by dialogue. The on-screen and off-screen pair’s unbeatable winning combo was also JJ’s debut film ‘Aayirathil oruvan’ (one in a thousand). They went on to dazzle the silver screens for a decade almost as lead hero and heroine.

I don’t remember having any political opinion on JJ therefore when she entered politics somewhat backdoor. Jayalalitha became a part of active memory for most of us only since she became our chief minister for the first time in 1991. I remember watching live her oath taking in tv. This is however for the next series.

The series closes with a rising Jayalalitha, pushed from MGR’s funeral cortege by Janaki Ramachandran’s kith and kin. Her phenomenal rise in Tamil Nadu politics is national news. The single shove that sent her reeling down the carriage forever uplifted her in public memory as the still was played repeatedly in tv winning JJ public sympathy. That combined with the sympathy wave for Congress after Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination (ADMK had tied up with congress for 1991 elections) saw her becoming the state’s first woman chief minister. She was only 43 then. The next series will hopefully start with her ascension to power and her way of conducting administration.

We Tamils have felt safest and securest when Jayalalitha was around. Civic administration was its best – long before Swachch Bharat got enforced. Every ten foot stood a cop on patrol day and night around the city. I was once surprised to find two women constables in Aalaiamman temple in T. Nagar where I had gone visiting (2003 or 2004) for cooking and offering sweet jaggery pongal for Mother Goddess within the temple premises. The temple, even if at the heart of the city, was deserted that noon. Two women cops gave me and my aunt some interesting company. They even drew water with us from the temple well for cooking ‘pongal’. May be that kind of overt security was not the need of the hour but there was not a square inch of the metro that was not under police surveillance in Jayalalitha period. Impeccable law and order. CCTVs arrived later. I have a lot to say on JJ. I have blogged much in the past about her. But nothing is concise enough to put down here. I will keep some info for the next series of Queen. I have seen JJ touch women’s life. In this part of the world, it mattered. It is such a basic but powerful thing that couldn’t be missed. Health center physicians met regularly every week in Rippon Building in JJ’s times. I came to know of this through the car driver of a lady gynaec who used to have an easy time in DMK reign. New born girl babies’ health and infant mortality stats were high on agenda, as JJ took a personal interest in women’s affairs. Never were the health centers run with such an efficacy as in JJ’s period. Even today if you walk into govt primary health centers run by state govt in Tamil Nadu, you can see how well it is run and managed and how hygiene is maintained. And it is almost free or heavily subsidized. Rare to see corporation/govt run clinics on their toes. She put into place a good and functional system regularizing the basics. Hopefully the set-up holds good after her.

Watching Queen, I reminded myself the reason why JJ accorded priority to women’s issues. She became the one true ‘kannithai.’ – the unwed Amma.

Jayalalitha passed away in power on her fourth term as the state’s CM. She returned to power effortlessly not even battling it out tough the final time as her deteriorating health took a heavy toll on her after her brief spell in Bangalore prison. The masses were aware, how much of her wealth was self-earned. Long before she joined politics, JJ was already a star. She was born with silver spoon and attended the finest convent in the city. If JJ had to suffer a sentence for corruption, I wonder what must be the case of EVERY SINGLE INDIAN POLITICIAN. Vendetta politics killed Jayalalitha. Disloyalty  shadowed JJ right through her life. What a tragedy. Not having a single human being to love or trust being so powerful, so beautiful, so successful, so classy, so wealthy. The unfairness of her Bangalore prison stint still hurts me and millions of Tamils. She did not deserve it. Okay, let me wait for the next series.

Ramya Krishnan is trying her best to justify her role as Jayalalitha in Queen but she has large shoes to fill in. I don’t have the names of those who have played the roles of younger JJ – first as a pre-teen and upto 15 years first and then as JJ in her twenties. They both have done a stupendous job. The MGR character selection is also good. It is possible that the actors have been chosen for their resemblance to original characters and also for their good mimicking of the stars’ mannerisms. JJ’s pout especially with her slightly upturned lower lip. Very characteristic of her and the one who played JJ in her twenties has tried her best. Still has not got it! Okay almost there.

Back in 1960s or 70s we had no mass media. Only by late 70s and early 80s, most of us got home even a black & white tv set. So it is interesting to watch the MGR JJ scenes being played out. Not much of info on Sandhya, also an actress and JJ’s mother. Not a happy childhood for JJ. Her whole life was an untold tragedy even if she was too good for the state. How could someone have lived such a lonely life entirely, yet become the CM of a male chauvinist province. Who cried for Jayalalitha when she lay lifeless. Which kith and kin. Her loneliness from the start is what breaks my heart.

Jayalalitha Jayaram will always be my heroine No.1. Bollywood did not have the fortune of having her because she was destined for greater glory. Although I became aware of her from the 1990s only, ever since i had paid her great attention. Her upright governance, how she took things head on and made the men squirm at her foot – won her accolades from every quarter. She toughed it out bravely and singly in an all-male world. Not even in my wildest dreams did i think that her chapter would draw to a close so soon. I will wait for the next series of Queen.

There is no point in making this biopic if it is not going to be true or honest enough. I hope the director-producer keep this vital point in mind. I have nothing to say on screenplay/direction because this is a known script. You know what is coming.

Posted in Political

Dharma In The Times Of Corona Virus – Part 1

First of all let me express my utmost and sincerest empathy with the people of China whose entire world has turned upside down in a jiffy thanks to the Corona virus.

May be this is not exactly the time to preach, but let me take the risk.

The vegetarian food habits of Hindus have always drawn flak from the west (for supposedly being an imbalanced diet)  although of late we see many turning to veganism even there. Similarly, the cremation of the dead by Hindus also used to be criticized. There have been instances where it would mentioned that only ‘heathens’ burned their dead and not believers. (I am not believer of your God, I am believer of MY God!!!). The Chinese govt has now ordered cremation of the virus victims as new reports pour in. Hindus continue to cremate their dead in utter disregard to world opinion for this very same reason. Another spiritual reason is that, the dead should not linger behind for any reason whatsoever. Their role in this mortal world is over. Not a trace of them can remain on earth after their time expires. Now this is a big chapter by itself that I shall skip.

Liberals advocate no boundaries, no caution. We Hindus and we Indians in general often are accused of nationalism and racist cultural practices.  Our ancestors did not ask us to refrain from meat without a reason. There are non vegetarians among Hindus as well. Even the hard core non veggies among Hindus have poorest appetite for meat when compared to the Abrahamics. For instance, in winter (I mean Indian winter), non vegetarian Hindus refrain mostly from eating meat for religious purposes. Similarly after monsoons, we have Hindus practising strict dietary controls keeping in line with the revolution of earth and consequent changing seasons. In Tamil Nadu, for instance, in the months of July-August (Aadi), the serving of ‘koozh’ (millets) along with buttermilk to cool our bodies after a long summer is a common religious/cultural practice. For an entire eight weeks, the custom is observed in Devi temples and rural homes which prevents the onset of small pox, chicken pox etc. Next comes September or the Shravana month when again, 99% Hindu meat eaters give up meat. Then the festival season. If you carefully study the times of outbreak of epidemics and/or the incubation period, you will notice that the infectious diseases spread after the monsoons and during winter months when there is not enough sunlight/heat to kill the bacteria/virus.

A friend was once struck by JB syndrome that paralysed her for four valuable years in her thirties. Where did this infection come from. The west of course. Then the germ adapts to Indian climatic conditions and mutates. A young father with an expectant wife returned to India after weeks in Hong Kong some years back. With him he carried an infection that was passed on to the pregnant mother. The child was born with an anomaly. Tests later proved that the infecting strain was alien to India. These cases cannot be proved at the world stage. These germs are not of Indian origin yet they find a way into our country destroying lives. It is funny that when those from the west want to visit India, they take preventive vaccinations!

Why don’t Hindus eat beef. It is possible that our forefathers discovered that the beef eaters developed heart ailments dying before their time. It is now established that the Indian subcontinent stock inherit the narrowest arteries by genetics compared to other races of the world. Risk factor for us for heart disease therefore is maximum. Blocks are common occurrences. Abstinence from red meat saves millions of lives every year in India.

China is a communist state controlled with an iron fist. No ethics, no conscience, no morality… Whatever control exists in public life in China seems completely absent when it comes to the personal lives of the chinese. Looks like the chinese students who travel abroad for education ask back when questioned, ‘Tiananmen, what Tianenmen??’ If you have read ‘1984’ by George Orwell, you will know what it is to ‘ERASE’ from a national memory a part of real time contemporary/happening history. How do we even compare China with India or with any other nation for that matter. Such a meticulous management and planning. Such a manipulation. I can’t believe in that case that the corona virus broke out of Wuhan just like that. How did things go out of hands.

There goes a conspiracy theory that, China was developing a bio weapon to take on India after the Doklam setback for the chinese in the bordering Himalayas. Is it the Corona virus? Was there an accidental leak from the lab. Many Israeli and US reports point to that. Even if so, my heart goes out to the common man of China who may have nothing to do with the sinister plan of their government. Once again, Karma is at play. Another conspiracy theory is that the west let loose the virus in China fearing China’s growth, to contain China. China is racing ahead of the US to become the next first global super power. The 21st century will be China’s, not America’s. (With China, India may join the race).

So many many millions assemble at a spot in Kumbh Mela in India every 12 years. Even the Haj draws millions from around the world to one place in Arabia every year. Do we see such horrendous outbreaks of epidemics anywhere. What is the reason. Self control. Regulated food habits. Hygiene that is not mere pant-suit and scented perfume.

The ancient and still-practised Hindu custom of eating with bare hands from the banana leaf (green plate), washing (!) with water, brushing with neem stick etc., are the healthiest and most hygienic practices that we need not have to be ashamed of. A carbo rich breakfast is the ideal way to kickstart your day. Not a sucking Keto diet! The cow urine is the best natural pesticide and antibiotic. The cow dung is the most natural and oxygen emitting cleanser and fuel – the only biogas to emit oxygen and not CO2. While ridiculing Hindus for the cow fascination, the west still has not alongside stopped from patenting even the cow urine benefits. The cow milk of the Indian subcontinent alone is A2 milk which is a brain stimulant that is not derived from the Jersey cows of the west. A2 is again patented and the Asian countries are forced to breed inferior and non-native cattle using global trade pacts. In this part of the world, we don’t even consult a physician if we get measles. We make the patients lie on neem leaves and feed them neem paste. Now that neem formula is patented by the west. Same for jaundice. For jaundice, we feed the patients with ‘keezha nelli keera’ (a green that grows only in India mostly). No medication. The patient makes a full recovery. This green is also now patented by the west. Ayurveda and Siddha are the best streams of medical practices in the world but mostly under-rated. Food is therapy for us Hindus. Food is holistic. Banana stem is a vegetable we include in our menu every week. This is a natural colon/bladder/kidney cleanser. So much has been taken out of India and patented for material benefits by vested interests. While at the same time, anything and everything Hindu has been ridiculed and mocked at.

Years back however, bubonic plague broke out in India (1994) out of nowhere. Surat was the epicenter of the plague. Fingers pointed to only one direction: field experiment by the rich and powerful nations. One can’t help believing the conspiracy theories in this case. Every Indian citizen believed it was a well executed lab test.. Soon situation was brought under control on quarantining the region arresting the spread of the dreadful epidemic.

When I was reading the ‘Kite runner’ by Khalid Hosseini, I was shocked that the little boy grew up watching the sacrifice of goats and cows in the name of God. It was normal and accepted in the society where he came from. Then it dawned on me why some ideologies breed terror. The little boy was comfortable watching cattle slayed with blood splashed. In fact, it was an annual ritual he eagerly looked forward to as a child. Our food habits have a lot to do with our spiritual quotient. Our moods and behaviour. Even our intelligence. Our conscience. Our gunas (qualities) ‘Satva’, ‘Raja’ and ‘Tamas’ are determined by the food we consume. Our food maketh us. Hindus are satva for the reason that we are basically, inherently and mostly vegetarians. The gunas are not limited to individuals. The gunas are applicable to races and nations wholesome. I understand my native culture and my dharma a lot more now than I did all these years.

We will never know the real reasons behind the Corona virus. Neither will we have the actual statistics from the chinese government.

Back in India, masses are worried more about the rising cost of spare parts for anything and everything as flights and container shipping to and from China are suspended until further notice. Meanwhile wondering how Gwadar is pulling. Hoping for some nice corona figures from our friendly neighbourhood?  😀