Enthusiasm is excitement with inspiration, motivation, and a pinch of creativity. The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails. Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.

If you don't create change, change will create you. Change starts when someone sees the next step and the first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance. Many fine things can be done in a day if you don't always make that day tomorrow. You see, in life, lots of people know what to do, but few people actually do what they know. Knowing is not enough! You must take action.

Sometimes it's the smallest decisions with larger aims that can change the lives of many. If our attempts can at least become a spark. We are really grateful and the TEAM can proudly proclaim ‘MISSION ACCOMPLISHED’.

If you can LEND A HELPING HAND for the advancement of our country and its people be part of our ENDEAVOR.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Forty is the old age of youth, fifty is the youth of old age.


By: Anisha Mohan

First you are young; then you are middle-aged; then you are old; then you are wonderful.

- Lady Diana Cooper

"We are the only species which changes what we are. A thousand years ago, life expectancy was only 23"

Futurology-Both you are a person who enjoys contemplating elevators to moon and robots with human brains, or you are not. By 2020,’cars will be fully self driven, this is the future prediction by BT Technology Timeline, 2005.

There is tremendous growth in all kinds of fields from health to nanotechnology to artificial intelligence.

Perhaps, the retirement age needs revisions to make use of experienced people for some more time in the interest of national development.

The tag senior citizen is generally given to a person who is between 58 and 65 years of age and has superannuated from active service.

This age limit was fixed based on old finding when life expectancy was lower than 60 years. Now with the advance in modern facilities and new life style the longevity is more than 75.

Scientist, Ray Kurzweil believes technology is developing so quickly we'll be able to hold off death longer. If Kuzweil is right, many of us and our robot friends, will be around for an eternity to enjoy whatever they come up with.

A man's life is normally divided into five stages namely-infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood and old age. There are 81 million older people in india-11 lakh in Delhi itself.

According to an estimate nearly 40% of senior citizens living with their family are reportedly facing abuse of one kind or another, but only one in six cases actually come to light. Isn't it a shame for us???

Our country boasts of its great heritage, culture and morals but what is actually happening. Its time to introspect, the fast dwindling culture and moral, or else they will be confined to some spiritual books.

Although our president, Pratibha Patil has given her assent to the Maintenance and Welfare of parents and senior citizens Act, which punishes children who abandon their parents with a prison term of three or five months, situation is grim for elderly people in India.

According to NGOs the incidence of elderly couples being forced out of their houses are very high. The elderly people say a phenomenon called 'grand dumping' is becoming common in urban areas. These days children are being increasingly intolerant of their parents health problems.

After a certain age health problems begin to crop up leading to losing control over one's own body. Even not recognising own family owing to Alzheimers are common in old age. It is then children begin to see their parents as burden. It is these parents who at times wander out of home or are thrown out. Some are dumped at old age homes. Delhi has nearly 11 lakh senior citizens but only 4 government run old age homes and three by NGOs,private and charitable trusts. But are old age homes a solution for this.?

Some senior citizens have the right atitude, take things in their stride, plan well their post retirement life and keep their body and mind in reasonable and good trim. They largely have a positive approach. While there are a few who take a dim view, feel dejected and neglected .Family situations and financial position do play a part in influencing life. Elders lives are more dependant on situations.

The emotional needs are not catered properly. Old age homes however comfortable cannot provide the emotional security that they get from home. Poor health and low income accelarate their misery.

Here is a small story which might open up some eyes

Once a son was so annoyed and irritated by is ageing father that he decided to get rid of him. So he took his father on a pilgrimage to Haridwar, and it was time to take a dip in the sacred river of Ganga to wash off all the sins and while the father was taking a dip, he told his son,"Iwon't get drowned here".the son was taken aback and asked him, "why?",the father replies," because I need to take two more steps to get myself drowned here, that’s where I left my dad years back!!".. "history keeps repeating"

Are our elders aware of their rights?? Parents cannot be evicted from a house without the due process of law if they have been staying there from before. There are three enactments that can be applied.

1. Under section 125 of CrPC,a magistrate can order a child to maintain his parents under the Maintenance of parents Act.

2. The Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, says an aged parent can demand maintenance from children in the same way that a wife can demand from her husband

3. The Domestic Violence Act too provides parents with the right to seek relief from any kind of abuse.

A National Policy on older persons was announced in January,1999, which identified a number of areas of intervention-financial security ,healthcare and nutrition, shelter, education, welfare, protection of life and property for the well being of older persons in the country. A National Council for Older Persons(NCOP) was constituted by the ministry of social justice and empowerment to operationalize the National Policy on older persons.

Why not create a bit of awareness??

Our parents need our love, care and affection. Spare some time by listening to them even if it does or does not make any sense because that is what matters to them. Make a small effort to make them happy.

"Growing Old is Mandatory, Growing up is optional" …

Profile of the author :

Anisha Mohan,

A first year medical student at A.J.Institute of medical sciences,Mangalore

Interested in reading,blogging and networking

my email id: anuv90@gmail.com

'tHE oBvIous tHAT waS nOt quiTE oBviOUs'

Be a Nihonjin!

By: Gautam Jayasurya


Greetings are always special to us, Asians. We love it, respect it and above all we mean it. Indians who are on race to catch Uncle Sam, never tried to know what the greetings like “good morning”, good afternoon’ or “good night” in our own languages actually meant. We forgot our own ‘namaskar’ or ‘vanakam’ which was a door to door part of our culture and tradition. The irony is that even western world has now begun showing their inclination towards ‘indianization’ which includes Yoga, Ayurveda, vegetarianism which can be attributed to the erosion of values and spiritual development.

‘History repeating itself’!!!

Before going to Japan for my higher Secondary Studies, I never tried to find out the genuine meaning behind these ordinary phrases. In the busiest of streets we meet someone whom we know and then we wish them, “Hello” or “Hai”. You feel happy and delighted. Have you ever thought about the logic behind this sensation?

During my stay of two years in Japan, I was invited to a number of interactive sessions with the Japanese students of primary and elementary schools. All they wanted from us was to teach them our greetings. So three of my Indian batch mates and couple of Taiwanese and Thai friends started to interact with them and later taught them ‘namaskar’, ‘vanakam’, ‘nihou’, ‘sawadeekap’ etc. In return the children used to teach us the Japanese scripts which were unknown to us. Technically speaking our Japanese language skills were no higher than the Japanese elementary students. This language and cultural exchange continued still the end of our stay.

Japanese culture taught me the importance of Aisatsu or greetings. It’s really interesting when we look into the origins of greetings. As we go deep into it, it reveals a hidden story throwing light into the Japanese culture existed in the ancient times.

Through greetings, Japanese culture teaches us mutual respect and altruism. They teach us that greetings mean a lot to those people, to whom they are wished, and much more to the wisher himself.

Finding it so silly?

You might wonder why I am explaining all these small bits of daily life which nobody cares. Remember the story of karma in Mahabharata? Let us not be Karnas in our lives.

Japanese bow their heads whenever they wish somebody; this is called as ‘le’. It is mode of showing respect, no matter who you are, what are your age is or what profession you are doing. This might feel awkward to strangers but there is always an air of attachment and self respect between the both. They believe that ‘Whoever be the stranger, they should be respected’. You will find it similar with our own thought of ‘adhithi devo bhava’.

Japan is a type of country where they give prime important to formality and rituals. Let me introduce you some of them.

  • Whenever I open a door I say “shisture shimasu”which means I am causing trouble to you.
  • Whenever I go out I say “ite kimasu” which means I will come back soon.
  • Whenever I comeback from a long journey I say “tadayima”which means I am safely back home.
  • Whenever we are going to receive some service from somebody we say “onegai shimasu”which means I am grateful to your service.

The positive energy that you gain when you greet someone has a reviving effect on your immediate surroundings. Things rarely tend to go wrong as the positive energy flows from one to the other. We can learn a lot from the Japanese way of greeting people. It teaches you that even a minutest of change in your wishing tone shall make wonders in your life.

Have you ever been desperate to be wished by somebody?

Have you ever felt that your life lacks energy?

Have you ever felt that the life is too monotonic?

Show more energy! Do more wishing! You can feel the warmth that spreads around you even in the chilliest of days.


Profile of the author :

Gautam Jayasurya,
3rd Year B.A (Hons) LLB,
Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law,
SSRN Author Page: <http://ssrn.com/author=1385329>
Twitter: http://twitter.com/goutamjaybe

Saturday, August 7, 2010


A new measurement of poverty


The National Food Security Bill is going to become a law. Even though there had been many efforts, to improve the standard of living of the marginalized sections of the society, the fundamental difference of the Bill is that it focuses to insure the availability of food grains at a free rate to these masses. The food security declaration of UN in 1996 says that it is the duty of a welfare state to insure food security of its citizens. The very root of their declaration implies that every nation is responsible to make available nutritional food for its people. The implementation of the National food security bill is based on this UN declaration.

The world in which we live is a picture of contrasts. On the one hand we have a few countries which are economically developed and prosperous. On the other we have mainly two thirds of population living in a state of poverty and dependency. The famous Indian Welfare Economist Amartya Sen defines ‘poverty is the inability to access basic standard of living’. The emphasize here is on the word ‘basic’. Basic standard of living means getting clean water, nutrition, health care, educational, clothing and shelter. According to the definition given by World Bank, people who earn less than $1.25 per day come under Below Poverty Line (BPL). On the basis of this definition 42% of Indian population fall under Below Poverty Line. According to the statistics of Planning Commission (2004-2005) 27.5% of the population live below poverty line. N.C Saxena Committee appointed by the Central Government says that 50% of the Indian population is still poor.

The newest estimation of poverty in India is done by Tendulkar Committee. The committee is lead by the famous Indian economist Suresh Tendulkar. He has adopted a new method to define and measure poverty. Beyond the definition of the World Bank based on the income earning, he considers health, education, sanitation facilities and amiability of nutritional food along with income earning.

Since 1972, the estimation of poverty in India was taken place on the basis of food calorie. The people who earn and income which is not enough to make available food from which they get 2100 calorie in cities and 2400 calorie in villages come under below poverty line.

Poverty is a relative concept. It is very difficult to determine a criterion that differentiate poverty and richness. According to beggars they are poor because they don’t get enough food to overcome hunger. There are millions of laborers who have work but don’t have even a hut. On the other hand there are people who have a shelter but don’t have income or employment. Before 2 centuries Adam Smith in his famous book “An Enquiry in to the nature and causes of Wealth of Nations” said a man is said to be rich or poor depending on the possibility of getting the living facilities to him.

Poverty is a situation which have multiple faces. It is the sum of non availability of income, shelter, health, education and drinking water. Its is the most vulgarous social and economic face of a nation. Mainly it is caused by the absence of resources. The largest number of people living below poverty line is in India. 2260.3 million people is said to be poor. 193.2 million is from villages and the rest 67.1 form cities. According to Tendulkar Committee, in Kerala there 19.7 % people who are below poverty line.

According to food security act going to be implemented, only BPL families will get free good grains. But it remains as an unquestionable truth there are millions of poor people who are above poverty line only in the records. However it is the best time for the govt. for a rethink to make available this facility to those kinds of people also. To achieve the purpose we have to develop in a good public distribution system (PDS). A well developed public distribution system can resist food inflation to certain extent. In India the basic living facilities that is got by a poor, and a lower middle income citizen is almost the same.

A untited nations backed study conducted by Oxford University revealed that poverty in atlas 8 Indian States Bihar, Ulttarpradesh, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand were worse than in some of the poorest countries of Sub Saharan Africa. These Indian states and some of the African countries whose multy dimensional poverty index (MPI) was equal to or greater than .32. (The MPI was calculated 104 countries ranging from 0 to 0.64). These states along with 26 African countries fall below that cutoff. For West Bengal, the MPI value is .32 in which 58% of people are poor. Actually the intensity of poverty In African countries is high. The population weighted MPI for 26 African countries is 0.43 where as for these Indian states it is 0.39. Even though there are signs of wiping out of poverty, one thing is sure that India has to wait many more years for the complete librations from this curse. Perhaps Paul Octopus in Germany can predict how many years Indian has to wait.