Posted in Pictures Desi

Mrs. Chatterjee vs Norway

Watched this moving flick in OTT platform. Real life story of a Bengali woman from India who moves to Norway with her husband on her marriage. Trouble brews on the arrival of her second child when Norwegian government appointed child supervision authorities (?) begin paying her home visits. For them apparently, everything Indian seems to be offensive and unsafe. In India, force feeding children, feeding babies with hands, eating with hands, kids sleeping in the same bed as parents – all these are very normal. Even spanking the kids is considered normal and actually happens! The Norwegian authorities regard this as human rights violation (!) and forcibly take the 3-4 year old son and 5 month breast fed baby daughter of Mrs. Chatterjee to put them into foster homes where they say the children may have a safe and better environment to grow up. How will a mother react to the circumstances? Mrs Chatterjee’s natural outbursts and enragement are misused to frame a false case accusing her of being mentally unstable and unreliable when it came to taking care of her children. Then start the crusades of Mrs. Chatterjee who takes on the Norway govt and Velfred, the child care trustees of Norway in getting back her biological children. Norway seems to be good at everything except for human emotions and humanitarian considerations. Its heartwrenching to see the mother fill bag after bag of breast milk, refrigerate it and pass on to her little baby not even weaned off mother’s milk. The authorities promptly do NOT feed the baby the precious milk. Mrs Chatterjee’s husband comes across as the most uncaring and typical male chauvinistic pig that INdia produces in tens of thousands. He is more focused on his citizenship papers and is unmoved by the plight of his own infant children or that of his wife. Court room after court room follow as Mrs Chatterjee violates unintentionally immigration laws trying to flee Norway and enter Sweden. She is deported while the children’s custody is passed on to her brother-in-law who lives with her hostile in-laws. The unmarried bachelor with no childraising experience gets paid big time (rs. 80 lacs in matter of 14 months as revealed in the court by the Norwegian attorney) on being entrusted with the custody of the children the papers for which are signed by Mrs Chatterjee on her husband’s persuasion as she remains unaware of the consequences. Finally after a two year hiatus, the heartbroken mother is reunited with her biological children in Indian courts that take cognizance of her trauma and nullify the Norway ruling. (Well Norway court laws are null and void in India, why can’t these guys get that). In this real life story, our late external affairs minister Smt. Sushma Swaraj played a vital role that helped in bringing the children back to India. It is alleged that Velfred is a scam which puts the immigrants’ children in the hands of local Norwegians who get paid hefty for raising the foster children to fit in their so-called ‘Norwegian society.’ Its cruel and heartless willfully separating the newborns, toddlers and infants from their biological parents and entrusting them from biological parents and entrusting their charge with strange cold foster homes, not all of which are conducive to healthy child raising. How civilized are these nations really that call themselves first world countries. The basic human emotion, compassion, empathy, sensitivity – these are absent in these highly developed societies where the human heart seems to be made of steel and stone. They seem to have absolutely no respect for cultural ethos of immigrants. Scandinavian countries want immigrants to boost their population but their greed is that, they do not want the children to be raised with native cultural values. Mrs Chatterjee now lives in Kolkata, divorced I guess, happily with her two children.

The assertiveness of the Indian government in the case without hurting the bilateral treaties with Norway is remarkable. Sushma was an asset to us the NRI community who live outside India. She took best care of us. We miss you, Sushma ji, none can replace you. Her warmth and care for the workers of Indian origin and her help in bringing trapped Indian women home from dangerous and unsafe zones around the world speak of her immaculate record.

India is not in any way inferior to Norway. We need not be like you at all. We are what we are. We all forcefeed our kids if they don’t eat properly for their own sake. We spank our kids. Our kids sleep with us parents in the same bed, until atleast they turn ten years. Whatever we do, we have the best interests of our children at heart. That is why we don’t have Mother’s day, Father’s day in Hindu society. Our parents live with us in one single JOINT family. We take care of our aged parents and do not banish them to condos or nursing homes. Bloody hell Norway. Only rakshas (demons) will take away a breastfed baby from her biological mother and put the infant in foster care. Is this even civilization. Is this what you call human rights? ARe you guys even human.

Years back this story was splashed across our mass media and print media. Its good to revisit this story as it has relevance even today as more and more Indians work/live abroad. Why are the Europeans and Americans wandering in Bikini in Bali. Why can’t you then adopt to Balinese culture and wear their native clothes.

In whole of this picture, the ruthlessness of the nation called Norway came through. They are very cold and heartless and think inferior of Asian nations and culture. Well, Norway you have everything except for HUMANITY. That is your problem. You have to be a monster to separate a 5 month old breastfed baby from her biological mother and put her in foster care when there was no criminal charges against her.

The case helped open many more pending cases in EU etc. While so, you see the pedophiles, child molesters etc., roaming the Asian cities. Most of them are from these advanced and so-called civilized nations only. They fly all the way to Thailand and Sri Lanka to have sex with minor children.

Asians have better family values. Family is one. Much more affectionate having no shame in exhibiting their emotion. There are things that can never be bought off. One such a precious gifts is the love of a biological mother. Throughout the picture as Rani Mukherjee played the title role, my eyes were pregnant with tears. The travails and shame and the indignity she suffers, the way she fights on nevertheless with such a courage for the sake of her children – these are proofs that these slinky Norwegian women can NEVER EVER match up to an Indian mother when it comes to sensitivity or emotion or love or care. Norway has to do a self-analysis to determine where they went wrong.

Finally, its not just a win for Mrs Chatterjee, its victory for India as India stamped her foot down and made her stance clear. It was a very proud moment as we refused to take nonsense.

Rani seems to have bloated but gave a stellar performance as usual. A natural, she is a treat to watch.

Highly recommended. Norway may find itself in quandary, so it be. Immigrants are not your slaves. Even America and Australia are nations of immigrants only. Neither are immigrants an inferior race. Everyone is abled differently that is all. We are gifted differently. Parenting style varies even within the confines of a society. There is no rule book to follow when it comes to parenting. The underscore is that, the child should feel SAFE AND SECURE AND LOVED AND CARED for by the biological parents. There is no substitute for biological FAMILY. There is no point in raising children in divided families or abusive families or violent families where the children may be pacified with games and gadgets to compensate for lack of love. Children growing up in India may not have the latest toys but they are blessed with parents devoted to them who cherish them, NEVER NEGLECT THEM, but raise them with total dedication, love, care and cultural values. An Indian mother is epitome of self sacrifice. We in India live for our children. They are our wealth. I have no ambition in life except to see that my family is well fed and happy. I have no shame in admitting that the whole purpose of my existence is for my family. My kids are my world. In their success and happiness I see my own. I don’t want individual glory. I am an Indian mother and now a grandmother.

Posted in Political

The Aadheenams have their day.

Sengol/Raj Danda installed amid controversies next to speaker

The Aadheenams of the most ancient temples of Tamil Nadu that have seen the Cholas had their day when the ‘Sengol’ of Thamizh (Chozha) kings was installed by our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in India’s new parliament building that was inaugurated with Sarva Dharma (all faith prayers) yesterday. Those who have grown up listening to Odhuvaar singing to Kapaleeshwara or Karpagaambal or Valleeshwara or even Abirami of Thirukadaiyur or Meenakshi of Madurai etc., may know that the Odhuvar tradition is now a dying tradition in our temples. Most temples not only in Tamil Nadu but also in all parts of INdia are controlled by the respective state governments that shamelessly use the Hindu temple fund for financing even the salaries of masjid workers for instance as we see in Kerala. Whereas the poor archakas of the temples are left high and dry with inadequate salaries, the government officials who have no connection with the temples drive latest sedans and SUVs drawing handsome pay packets. In Sri Venkateswara temple in Tirumala, there were even Christians employed in the Devastanams who were ready to fight legal battles for retaining their jobs. This is the true cost of secularism. Temples under the Aadheenam may be free of state government clutches but how are they deploying the funds from the temples under their administration from their overflowing coffers. How many temples in Kumbakonam, Mayavaram etc., are in dire need of basic repairs? Some temple towers (gopurams) that are over 1500 years old are even on the verge of collapsing. Worst maintained and not kept clean. Bribes in the abode of god, be it temple under Tamil Nadu temple and charitable trust (govt department) or those under the aegis of the Adheenams are a dampaner but I understand that special darshans are crowd management tactics. What melted my heart was hearing Thevaram and Thiruvasagam chantings reverberating from our seat of governance in Delhi. Most ancient mantras in Thamizh, the verses have the antiquity and sanctity and aura of the ages old Sanskrit scriptures. It was especially enthralling to note the Odhuvar attached to Kapaleeshwar temple, Mylapore play a pivotal role in the ‘grihapravesh’ or the housewarming ceremony. Interestingly the new parliament of INdia is triangular shaped representing the most powerful Sri Yantra. Two inverted Triangles overlapping each other represent union of Shiva and Shakthi: the static energy and the kinetic energy that is the driving force. Shiva is latent, Shakthi is the force.

Posted in Food For Soul

Shani Shingnapur

Shani Shingnapur near Nashik, Maharashtra was very much in news for the controversy surrounding women being debarred from performing the Abhishek ritual to Lord Shani (Saturn). The Shani murthy (idol) here is swayambu (erupted out of earth on its own). Tripti Desai led the march from the forefront to win rights for women to conduct/perform rituals for Lord Shani with their own hands on par with men. I had an opportunity to visit the shrine in the month of April. Saturn phase is on for me right now. To spell it out in Thamizh, ‘ezharai nattu sani’ going on for me. Its tenure is for 7.5 years. This is second time in my lifeline that saturn rules the house in my horoscope. This is on for over an year now. Shani period is supposed to be physically and mentally and even financial exhausting to most. A very testy period in one’s life where we may be facing health woes. We may get ourselves entangled in unnecessary troubles. So I exercised the privilege of anointing Lord Shani with sesame oil with my own hands and perform the abhishegam to Him during my visit to His temple. My two friends still disapproved of my move. There were about a hundred devotees. While most men performed the abhishegam, there was a general reluctance among the women to come forward for the ritual. Only a handful of us dared. The men (husbands) restrained their wives and daughters and stood in queue to partake in the ritual. But nobody frowned when some of us women stepped forward for the ritual. The fee for the ritual is 500 bucks. The oil price was 80 or 90 bucks. The ticket issuing clerk had a disapproving smirk pasted on his face as he handed out the token to me. I hoped to please Lord Shani asking Him to soften His blows or at least give me the physical mental strength to bear shocks and upsets if it comes to that. To anyone who questions change of age old customs, I would like to remind that once upon a time, women were not even allowed to attend schools, not divorce, not remarry. Women did not get a share of family estate/inheritance. There was even the heinous practice of Sati in India. Its not you and I who decide what should happen when. As a total believer, I trust that it was perhaps Lord Shani Himself who decided that the time was ripe for women to perform rituals for Him with their own hands. அவனன்றி ஓர் அணுவும் அசையாது. Whether it is Shani or Lord Aiyappa, the move or decision to grant women entry is decided by the deity not by humans. As an unshakable believer in and follower of Hindu Dharma, this is where I differ from my friends’ view point. My Kerala friends cannot agree with the reforms naturally. By change in norms, I do not state that any disrespect has to be shown to the deity. In Sabarimala, the court case was interestingly filed by a Kerala muslim for entry of women into the hill shrine while no muslim woman can ever share the mosque space with the men. Not a single petition is filed in Indian courts to win the muslim women their equal rights. The women who first broke barriers in Sabarimala were also non Hindus – with a muslim/christian woman throwing a used/soiled sanitary napkin on Lord Aiyappa when with police escort she became the first fertile woman to set her foot in the holy shrine of Lord Aiyappa. Can you imagine a non muslim desecrating an islamic place of worship and getting alive with it. This is my Hindu India. This is the level of our tolerance. We Hindus give police protection to muslim/christians to go in and desecrate our places of worship in the name of democracy and secularism. It broke every Hindu heart when the kind of desecration the woman subjected our supreme deity to, came to light. We left the offenders to their Karma. While I am for equality of sexes and women’s rights, this is a clear case of mischief no doubt. Its good that a film like Kerala Story happened. An eye opener. After the Sabarimala sacrilege, the very next year the entire Kerala state was flooded and crores and crores of property were lost. Washed out. When Lord Aiyappa is ready to receive women devotees in His abode, trust Him to move the earths and the skies not just the courts to make it happen. Lord Aiyappa is viewed as Naishtika Brahmachari by Hindus.

abhishek for Lord Shani at Shani Shingnapur shrine with my own hands…

Let me make it clear that, there was nothing rebellious about my Shani access or worship. I am a practing Hindu and I considered it a blessing to get nearer to Shani Bhagwan. I was full of reverence and faith.

Posted in Political

Defining Moment For Pakistan.

When Pak PM Shri Shahbaz Sharif went aghast that the inferno that the nation saw in last few days reminded him of the 1971 war (with India), there was perhaps a a ring of truth to his words. Pakistan is off bounds for average Indian citizen. Our inputs are from media. However in our recorded memory, this is the first time ever that the Pakistanis went up in arms against their much feared armed forces which was brave of them. Imran Khan, who was illegally stripped off his premier post for batting against their army, was let off by the Supreme court after his illegal arrest by the law enforcement/security. The incident incited violence in the major cities that saw smoke billowing out of raging fires from buildings set ablaze, including on one of an army commander. Pakistan army has been directly behind the wars with India (read: without a justifiable rationale) that cost the nation dear – including the last one at Kargil. Musharraf, Pakistan’s ex general turned self-styled president was single handedly responsible for the unnecessary and costly blunder that set the relationship between the two hostile neighbours behind by a couple of more precious years. It reflected to us Indians, the sheer irresponsibility and inefficacy of their army chiefs and their ruling power as the Nawaz Shariff government at the center watched helpless and fell in line with the overruling army general. It underscored for us one more time, WHO IS THE BOSS in Pakistan. Soon Sharif was exiled to Saudi and Benazir was assassinated. Has Pakistan had a single prime minister who retired gracefully and in peace with wisdom to offer to the next democratically elected top man taking over the mantle from him or her? History has shown that whoever takes the chair either gets exiled or assassinated or his/her term truncated. Imran Khan’s case was the last as he too left the term incomplete. The Pakistan public reaction to the jungle rule of their armed forces comes as a breather. Pakistan military are infamous for their relentless corruption. The quickest way to prosperity is through enrolment in their army, whereas in countries like India, a career in the barracks is frowned upon by the youth normally. Our government has to entice young men and women to consider a stint in our armed forces with attractive sops. Army connections win one business contracts and licences in Pakistan. Army is the be-all, do-all. The all powerful Pakistan army also is the wealthiest organization in their country not surprisingly. Their spy agency will put those like we have in India to shame. Such a network! Pakistan has some good points such as their spy agency, cricket, hockey, ghazal, mountaineering etc. Pakistan natural resources mostly remain untapped. A vast potential herein has been sold over the counter just-like-that to Chinese who have taken over the Gwadar port for access to the Arabian sea. Pakistan is reeling not only under IMF loans but also against a burgeoning Chinese credit that they have to pay through their teeth. Media attributes the lawlessness to Imran Khan in Pakistan but as Pakistan national currency hovered at 299 rupees against US$ last evening, it is palpable that the public unrest is also manifestation of a peaking frustration as the cost of living is no more under control in their country and hooliganism is only the natural outcome of mass paranoia of the countrymen fearing famine and hopelessness in near future. As Pakistan stares at bankruptcy, we Indians keep our fingers crossed and await developments. For a healthy Pakistan is in Indian interests.