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Posts tagged: india

In Kashmir, there are thousands of unmarked graves in secret cemeteries created by the army and the police to hide their crimes. Even when civilian officials confirm that innocents were slaughtered, nothing is done. “We have all these great human rights institutions, but still nobody in India gets justice when the state murders one of their family members,” said Henri Tiphagne, chairman of the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development based in Bangkok. “That’s true all over the country, not just in Kashmir.”

[…]Perhaps because of the limited attention given this remote part of the world, soldiers and police officers do not even bother to hide the evidence when they murder and rape innocents, said Babloo Loitongbam, founder of Human Rights Alert in Imphal.

“The political leadership and judiciary here have created an ecosystem where state-sponsored killing is routine, and they do it with complete callousness,” Mr. Loitongbam said. “They don’t plan it; they don’t hide it; they just kill people.”

An investigation last year by a panel appointed by India’s Supreme Court into six representative cases from Manipur State found official explanations of killings so entirely at odds with common sense and available evidence that it concluded that the victims, including a 12-year-old boy killed in view of his parents, had all been murdered. Still, no one has been arrested. One of the suspect officers was given India’s highest peacetime honor for bravery.
Gardiner Harris, In Remote Corners of India, Immunity for Soldiers Who Kill and Rape Civilians. (cw for descriptions of rape, murder, abuse). (via inlovewiththepractice)
It took Adolf Hitler and his Nazi cohorts 12 years to round up and murder 6 million Jews, but their Teutonic cousins, the British, managed to kill almost 4 million Indians in just over a year, with Prime Minister Winston Churchill cheering from the sidelines. Australian biochemist Dr Gideon Polya has called the Bengal Famine a “manmade holocaust” because Churchill’s policies were directly responsible for the disaster. Bengal had a bountiful harvest in 1942, but the British started diverting vast quantities of food grain from India to Britain, contributing to a massive food shortage in the areas comprising present-day West Bengal, Odisha, Bihar and Bangladesh. Author Madhusree Mukerjee tracked down some of the survivors and paints a chilling picture of the effects of hunger and deprivation. In Churchill’s Secret War, she writes: “Parents dumped their starving children into rivers and wells. Many took their lives by throwing themselves in front of trains. Starving people begged for the starchy water in which rice had been boiled. Children ate leaves and vines, yam stems and grass. People were too weak even to cremate their loved ones.”

Remembering India’s Forgotten Holocaust. 

Sarah Waheed notes: “One of the students in my modern South Asia history class a few years ago, was extremely upset that the book we were reading referred to the Bengal famine as a holocaust, calling the author ‘biased’. When I asked him to clarify and elaborate upon what he meant by ‘biased’, he exclaimed, inflamed, “There was only one holocaust!” The rest of the students were, however, more open to the idea of the 20th century being a century of multiple holocausts. The terms ‘holocaust’ and ‘genocide’, however, continue to elicit trauma envy.”

(via mehreenkasana)

onoffman:

The classical dance form Bharatanatyam

Performed by disabled people on wheelchairs from the Ability Unlimited Foundation in India.

They write: “Today it is our privilege that the most respected classical dance form Bharatanatyam can be performed by disabled people on wheel chairs. The complete adavu (steps), jathi (combination of advus), thirmanams (sequence of pure rhythmic dance composed of adavu-jathis) are reinvented on wheels and these are performed with absolute precision. Wheel chairs have great advantage to perform many steps, to mention a few like rangakramana adavu (covering the stage), bhramari (spins), jaru adavu (sliding), with speed and precision. The spinning speed of a wheel chair is faster than an accomplished dancer’s spins! The speed on wheel chairs is about 100 kms/hr. They have excelled both in Nritta and Nritya.”

see more on http://www.abilityunlimited.com/

poc-creators:

"Amish: Humility of a Witness"

‘‘My books began as a pure philosophical thesis, nine or ten years ago. My family and I were watching a TV program. We discovered something very interesting. In the ancient Indian pantheon, which exists today as well, Indian gods are called devas and demons are called asuras. What we discovered in this TV program was that in the ancient versions of the religion, the gods were called asuras and demons were called devas. The exact opposite! Which started a very interesting debate in our family. If the ancient versions and the modern versions met, they’d probably call each other evil, because my god is your demon, and your god is my demon, so they must be evil. Who’d be right? The obvious answer is neither – they’re just two different ways of life. If neither of them is evil, what is evil? Is evil something bigger? Is evil something beyond this?”

‘‘For me, it’s a mix of fiction and history. Some of the historical interpretations aren’t the official ones, like the Aryan invasion theory, which in India, at least, the official historians still believe. The theory is that the Vedic people were descendants of central Asians who conquered India three and a half thousand years ago and forced the original inhabitants to move down south. These central Asian leaders became the Vedic Aryans. Many Western historians have started junking the Aryan invasion theory. They say there isn’t enough evidence to back that idea. Migrations happen all the time, but the Vedic civilization was an indigenous culture…

*

‘‘My book was rejected by every publisher I sent it to. One publisher explained in very clear terms why the book had no hope. He said that it’s on a religious topic, and the youth are not interested in religion, so I’d alienated that market segment. They don’t want someone talking down to them. (I don’t think it’s a religious book, I think it’s an adventure book. It just happens to be based on Shiva, a religious figure.) The assumption was that young readers wouldn’t be interested, because religious books weren’t selling at that time in India. The second thing was that I have a different take on religion, not in line with the official version, which means the older religious people wouldn’t be interested. The third thing is that I insisted on writing in modern Indian English, which means the literary elite in India wouldn’t be interested. They like British-style writers, they’re still stuck in that era, and they don’t want modern prose. Basically I’d alienated every single reader segment. I told him, ‘I didn’t do market research, I just wrote the book.’

‘‘So I’m self-published.

*

I don’t use my surname, Tripathi, on the cover of my books. It’s a caste surname, and I’m against the caste system. I have to use it for legal purposes, obviously, but on my books I don’t use it. The way the caste system exists today is not the way it was originally supposed to be. Today it’s based on birth, which is wrong. Originally it was a hierarchy based on karma, on merit.”MORE…”

I am only witness to Shiva’s magic

Amish Tripathi on his dream run as the author of the mythological trilogy and why he doesn’t want to wake up 
From being a pen-pusher in the corporate sector, Amish Tripathi has indeed come a long way, taking the literary world by storm with his first book. As his Shiva trilogy finally comes to a much-awaited end, the author speaks to us about his journey, how Shiva might soon make a splash in a Hollywood flick, and why he needs to move on after Meluha. Excerpts: 

From the first book, till now, how have you evolved as an author? 

Now that I am a full-time writer, I find that I can read as much as I like, visit new places, do extensive research, meet interesting people. I am not constrained by time and I think that reflects in my writing now. Perhaps this is the reason why my third book is 600 pages long! More importantly, I have evolved as a human being. I understand how lucky I am in terms of the family, friends and partners who surround me. Also, in the process of writing my books, I have rediscovered faith and spirituality. I am happy. Isn’t that what truly matters?

Be it the book cover or marketing strategy, Meluha has been a first in many ways. What can we expect now? 

Having been rejected by every publisher, one of the happy by-products of my first book, Meluha, was when I finally selfpublished it along with my agent (Anuj Bahri). Then I had complete control over marketing. There was nobody from the publishing industry telling me that ‘this is the way it has always been done in publishing’, which meant that we could try new and innovative marketing ideas. Due to my background (one of the departments I managed in my last job was Marketing), I had access to some really smart marketing people, none of whom were related to the publishing industry at that time. These people gave me some great advice and I, in turn, was smart enough to listen to them! In terms of the marketing strategy for the third book, The Oath of the Vayuputras, you’re going to have to wait and see. But we have some pretty good ideas up our sleeves! The cover of the book has already been launched. I hope you like it. 

MORE

citylandscapes:

Darjeeling, India Source: Mahmud Farooque (flickr)

citylandscapes:

Darjeeling, India

Source: Mahmud Farooque (flickr)

The dance of democracy: Voters turned in huge numbers to vote in the third and important phase of India’s general elections 2014 today (a picture or two are from the first two phases). (Part 1)

nezua:

searchingforknowledge:


Fifteen rape victims have formed martial arts movement and are prepared to confront abusers if no one listens to their complaints…


A GROUP of women are fighting back against the sickening culture of rape which they say infects India. Fifteen determined females – all victims themselves – have trained in martial arts and are prepared to hand out rough justice if no one listens to their complaints. And the movement, called the Red Brigade, is growing rapidly following the gang rape and murder of medical student Jyoti Singh Pandey that horrified the world.


In a nation where a woman is reportedly raped every 20 minutes, the group’s leader Usha Vishwakarma said: “We are fighting back – and the boot is now on the other foot.” Member Sufia Hashmi, 17, said: “We’ve caught a lot of men recently. I joined because men always used to pass comments on me and touch my body but now we beat them and they run.”


Like the other members in the northern city of Lucknow, 25- year-old Usha has first-hand experience of the daily dangers women face in the huge nation – a teacher tried to rape her when she was 18. She said: “He grabbed me and tried to open my trousers. I kicked him in the crotch and ran.” Usha complained to staff but they told her to forget it and allowed her attacker to carry on teaching. She said: “Many parents tell girls to quit school so there will be no sexual violence. But we said no – this has to stop. We decided to form a group to fight for ourselves, not just complain.”MORE



Roll deep

nezua:

searchingforknowledge:

Fifteen rape victims have formed martial arts movement and are prepared to confront abusers if no one listens to their complaints…
A GROUP of women are fighting back against the sickening culture of rape which they say infects India. Fifteen determined females – all victims themselves – have trained in martial arts and are prepared to hand out rough justice if no one listens to their complaints. And the movement, called the Red Brigade, is growing rapidly following the gang rape and murder of medical student Jyoti Singh Pandey that horrified the world.
In a nation where a woman is reportedly raped every 20 minutes, the group’s leader Usha Vishwakarma said: “We are fighting back – and the boot is now on the other foot.” Member Sufia Hashmi, 17, said: “We’ve caught a lot of men recently. I joined because men always used to pass comments on me and touch my body but now we beat them and they run.”
Like the other members in the northern city of Lucknow, 25- year-old Usha has first-hand experience of the daily dangers women face in the huge nation – a teacher tried to rape her when she was 18. She said: “He grabbed me and tried to open my trousers. I kicked him in the crotch and ran.” Usha complained to staff but they told her to forget it and allowed her attacker to carry on teaching. She said: “Many parents tell girls to quit school so there will be no sexual violence. But we said no – this has to stop. We decided to form a group to fight for ourselves, not just complain.”MORE
Roll deep
thebigbadafro:

nieceoftheserpent:

theskaldspeaks:

needtherapy:

jnenifre:

From Facebook

After spending years developing a simple machine to make inexpensive sanitary pads, Arunachalam Muruganantham has become the unlikely leader of a menstrual health revolution in rural India. Over sixteen years, Muruganantham’s machine has spread to 1,300 villages in 23 states and since most of his clients are NGOs and women’s self-help groups who produce and sell the pads directly in a “by the women, for the women, and to the women” model, the average machine also provides employment for ten women. Muruganantham’s interest in menstrual health began in 1998 when, as a young, newly married man, he saw his wife, Shanthi, hiding the rags she used as menstrual cloths. Like most men in his village, he had no idea about the reality of menstruation and was horrified that cloths that “I would not even use… to clean my scooter” were his wife’s solution to menstrual sanitation. When he asked why she didn’t buy sanitary pads, she told him that the expense would prevent her from buying staples like milk for the family. Muruganantham, who left school at age 14 to start working, decided to try making his own sanitary pads for less but the testing of his first prototype ran into a snag almost immediately: Muruganantham had no idea that periods were monthly. “I can’t wait a month for each feedback, it’ll take two decades!” he said, and sought volunteers among the women in his community. He discovered that less than 10% of the women in his area used sanitary pads, instead using rags, sawdust, leaves, or ash. Even if they did use cloths, they were too embarrassed to dry them in the sun, meaning that they never got disinfected — contributing to the approximately 70% of all reproductive diseases in India that are caused by poor menstrual hygiene. Finding volunteers was nearly impossible: women were embarrassed, or afraid of myths about sanitary pads that say that women who use them will go blind or never marry. Muruganantham came up with an ingenious solution: “I became the man who wore a sanitary pad,” he says. He made an artificial uterus, filled it with goat’s blood, and wore it throughout the day. But his determination had severe consequences: his village concluded he was a pervert with a sexual disease, his mother left his household in shame and his wife left him. As he remarks in the documentary “Menstrual Man” about his experience, “So you see God’s sense of humour. I’d started the research for my wife and after 18 months she left me!”After years of research, Muruganantham perfected his machine and now works with NGOs and women’s self-help groups to distribute it. Women can use it to make sanitary napkins for themselves, but he encourages them to make pads to sell as well to provide employment for women in poor communities. And, since 23% of girls drop out of school once they start menstruating, he also works with schools, teaching girls to make their own pads: “Why wait till they are women? Why not empower girls?” As communities accepted his machine, opinions of his “crazy” behavior changed. Five and a half years after she left, Shanthi contacted him, and they are now living together again. She says it was hard living with the ostracization that came from his project, but now, she helps spread the word about sanitary napkins to other women. “Initially I used to be very shy when talking to people about it, but after all this time, people have started to open up. Now they come and talk to me, they ask questions and they also get sanitary napkins to try them.”In 2009, Muruganantham was honored with a national Innovation Award in 2009 by then President of India, Pratibha Patil, beating out nearly 1,000 other entries. Now, he’s looking at expanding to other countries and believes that 106 countries could benefit from his invention. Muruganantham is proud to have made such a difference: “from childhood I know no human being died because of poverty — everything happens because of ignorance… I have accumulated no money but I accumulate a lot of happiness.” His proudest moment? A year after he installed one of the machines in a village so poor that, for generations, no one had earned enough for their children to attend school. Then he received a call from one of the women selling sanitary pads who told him that, thanks to the income, her daughter was now able to go to school. To read more about Muruganantham’s story, the BBC featured a recent profile on him at http://bbc.in/1i8tebG or watch his TED talk at http://bit.ly/1n594l6. You can also view his company’s website at http://newinventions.in/To learn more about the 2013 documentary Menstrual Man about Muruganantham, visit http://www.menstrualman.com/For resources to help girls prepare for and understand their periods - including several first period kits - visit our post on: “That Time of the Month: Teaching Your Mighty Girl about Her Menstrual Cycle” at www.amightygirl.com/blog?p=3281To help your tween understand the changes she’s experiencing both physically and emotionally during puberty, check out the books recommended in our post on “Talking with Tweens and Teens About Their Bodies” at http://www.amightygirl.com/blog?p=2229And, if you’re looking for ways to encourage your children to become the next engineering and technology innovators, visit A Mighty Girl’s STEM toy section athttp://www.amightygirl.com/toys/toys-games/science-math


Awesome, dude. Awesome. I mean, AWESOME.

WHAT AN EPIC BADASS!

This man is awesome!

I hope that’s his wife putting pads together in the back. His swag is on 5hunna just because he’s part of the gotdamn solution!

thebigbadafro:

nieceoftheserpent:

theskaldspeaks:

needtherapy:

jnenifre:

From Facebook

After spending years developing a simple machine to make inexpensive sanitary pads, Arunachalam Muruganantham has become the unlikely leader of a menstrual health revolution in rural India. Over sixteen years, Muruganantham’s machine has spread to 1,300 villages in 23 states and since most of his clients are NGOs and women’s self-help groups who produce and sell the pads directly in a “by the women, for the women, and to the women” model, the average machine also provides employment for ten women. 

Muruganantham’s interest in menstrual health began in 1998 when, as a young, newly married man, he saw his wife, Shanthi, hiding the rags she used as menstrual cloths. Like most men in his village, he had no idea about the reality of menstruation and was horrified that cloths that “I would not even use… to clean my scooter” were his wife’s solution to menstrual sanitation. When he asked why she didn’t buy sanitary pads, she told him that the expense would prevent her from buying staples like milk for the family. 

Muruganantham, who left school at age 14 to start working, decided to try making his own sanitary pads for less but the testing of his first prototype ran into a snag almost immediately: Muruganantham had no idea that periods were monthly. “I can’t wait a month for each feedback, it’ll take two decades!” he said, and sought volunteers among the women in his community. He discovered that less than 10% of the women in his area used sanitary pads, instead using rags, sawdust, leaves, or ash. Even if they did use cloths, they were too embarrassed to dry them in the sun, meaning that they never got disinfected — contributing to the approximately 70% of all reproductive diseases in India that are caused by poor menstrual hygiene. 

Finding volunteers was nearly impossible: women were embarrassed, or afraid of myths about sanitary pads that say that women who use them will go blind or never marry. Muruganantham came up with an ingenious solution: “I became the man who wore a sanitary pad,” he says. He made an artificial uterus, filled it with goat’s blood, and wore it throughout the day. But his determination had severe consequences: his village concluded he was a pervert with a sexual disease, his mother left his household in shame and his wife left him. As he remarks in the documentary “Menstrual Man” about his experience, “So you see God’s sense of humour. I’d started the research for my wife and after 18 months she left me!”

After years of research, Muruganantham perfected his machine and now works with NGOs and women’s self-help groups to distribute it. Women can use it to make sanitary napkins for themselves, but he encourages them to make pads to sell as well to provide employment for women in poor communities. And, since 23% of girls drop out of school once they start menstruating, he also works with schools, teaching girls to make their own pads: “Why wait till they are women? Why not empower girls?” 

As communities accepted his machine, opinions of his “crazy” behavior changed. Five and a half years after she left, Shanthi contacted him, and they are now living together again. She says it was hard living with the ostracization that came from his project, but now, she helps spread the word about sanitary napkins to other women. “Initially I used to be very shy when talking to people about it, but after all this time, people have started to open up. Now they come and talk to me, they ask questions and they also get sanitary napkins to try them.”

In 2009, Muruganantham was honored with a national Innovation Award in 2009 by then President of India, Pratibha Patil, beating out nearly 1,000 other entries. Now, he’s looking at expanding to other countries and believes that 106 countries could benefit from his invention. 

Muruganantham is proud to have made such a difference: “from childhood I know no human being died because of poverty — everything happens because of ignorance… I have accumulated no money but I accumulate a lot of happiness.” His proudest moment? A year after he installed one of the machines in a village so poor that, for generations, no one had earned enough for their children to attend school. Then he received a call from one of the women selling sanitary pads who told him that, thanks to the income, her daughter was now able to go to school. 

To read more about Muruganantham’s story, the BBC featured a recent profile on him at http://bbc.in/1i8tebG or watch his TED talk at http://bit.ly/1n594l6. You can also view his company’s website at http://newinventions.in/

To learn more about the 2013 documentary Menstrual Man about Muruganantham, visit http://www.menstrualman.com/

For resources to help girls prepare for and understand their periods - including several first period kits - visit our post on: “That Time of the Month: Teaching Your Mighty Girl about Her Menstrual Cycle” at www.amightygirl.com/blog?p=3281

To help your tween understand the changes she’s experiencing both physically and emotionally during puberty, check out the books recommended in our post on “Talking with Tweens and Teens About Their Bodies” at http://www.amightygirl.com/blog?p=2229

And, if you’re looking for ways to encourage your children to become the next engineering and technology innovators, visit A Mighty Girl’s STEM toy section athttp://www.amightygirl.com/toys/toys-games/science-math

Awesome, dude. Awesome. I mean, AWESOME.

WHAT AN EPIC BADASS!

This man is awesome!

I hope that’s his wife putting pads together in the back. His swag is on 5hunna just because he’s part of the gotdamn solution!

awkwardsituationist:

photos by (click pic) saravanan dhandapani, vilvesh swaminathan and mahesh balasubramanian from the mayana soora thiruvizha festival, which occurs every march in the small, southern indian village of kaveripattinam and is devoted to angalamman, one of the fiercest forms of the mother goddess amman.

stay-human:

When the British came to India, Bengal was India’s richest province. 

The British would back certain Indian princely states with financial and military resources over others, or alternatively install puppet rulers during rule disputes, then in return for their backing they would demand immense sums of revenue which the princely states would be unable to procure leading to increasing and basically unpayable debt—at which point the British would take over politically. When this happened in Bengal the British started using the tax revenues from Bengal to pay for Bengal’s own exports to Britain. Essentially a policy of total wealth extraction, draining Bengal’s resources and causing, previously unthinkable, famines that wiped out perhaps 50% of Bengal’s total population.

When the British left India, Bengal was India’s most impoverished province.

ultralaser:

 Leopard Sleeping on the Tree (by najeebkhan2009)

Leopard Sleeping on the Tree on a Cold Foggy morning - In the Bandipur Forest which is about 200 Miles From Bangalore - India
Bangalore-najeebkhan@hotmail.com

(via lightningr0se) (via hexapoda)

ultralaser:

Leopard Sleeping on the Tree (by najeebkhan2009)

Leopard Sleeping on the Tree on a Cold Foggy morning - In the Bandipur Forest which is about 200 Miles From Bangalore - India

Bangalore-najeebkhan@hotmail.com

(via lightningr0se) (via hexapoda)

syahirahshahir:

planetperusal:

Manali, Himachal Pradesh, India.

cannot wait for February! but you can only see snow everywhere 

this is actually yangshuo county in guangxi province, china.  rice paddies on the li river, to be specific,
manali is a ski town in the indian mountains, elevation 2000 feet, notable for its hindu temples, buddhist monastaries, and great powder.

(thanks, facebook.  though this extremely confused blog post is probably the real culprit, being the ‘one of these is not like the others’ result on google image)

syahirahshahir:

planetperusal:

Manali, Himachal Pradesh, India.

cannot wait for February! but you can only see snow everywhere 

this is actually yangshuo county in guangxi province, china.  rice paddies on the li river, to be specific,

manali is a ski town in the indian mountains, elevation 2000 feet, notable for its hindu temples, buddhist monastaries, and great powder.

manali india via wikipedia

(thanks, facebook.  though this extremely confused blog post is probably the real culprit, being the ‘one of these is not like the others’ result on google image)