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Showing posts from March, 2022

North East: Ambit Of AFSPA Reduced In Three States, Final Triumph For Irom Sharmila!

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In a historic move today the Indian Home Minister Amit Shah has announced a reduction in the ambit of the dreaded Armed Forces Special Powers Act-1958 (AFSPA) in three North Eastern states of Assam, Nagaland and Manipur. As per the details of the announcement the AFSPA has been removed in 23 districts of Assam, in 7 in Nagaland and in 6 districts of Manipur (under 20 police stations). The home minister said that this decision is made following a drastic improvement in the security situation of the insurgency-infested states and a palpable progress in moving toward peace and development. He claims the move as a credit for the devoted commitment of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. No doubt, the present Chief Minister of Assam Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma, after defecting from the Congress, had led BJP (ruling Bharatiya Janata Party) to victory in Assam in 2016 and in 2021, and has contributed immensely in establishing dominance of the BJP in nearly all states of the region. So then, some credit

IPL-2022 Starts From 26th March: New Format, New Teams And New Captains!

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The TATA Indian Premiere League (IPL)-2022 starts in the state of Maharashtra from tomorrow, the 26 th of March, across three stadiums in Mumbai and one in Pune. This 15 th edition of the IPL is set to welcome the fans cum cricket revelers back to the stadiums after the Pandemic cricket-new-normal in 2020 and 2021 editions—the former delayed and had to be held in UAE while the latter started in India, but had to be stopped halfway and later shifted to UAE. As per COVID-19 norms at least 25% of the stadium capacity will be allowed and in light of relaxed restrictions all over India the crowd limit is all set to be increased later on. There will be a total of 74 matches during 26 th March-29 th May out of which 70 league matches will be played in the stadiums mentioned above and the venues of the 4 play-off matches are yet to be decided. Ahmedabad was earlier earmarked for the final matches.   Only for the second time in the IPL history there are 10 teams or franchises in the IPL

Cricket Movie ‘83’: A Nostalgic Trip Back To The Moments Of Glory!

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The movie aptly titled ‘83’ is really worth reliving Team India’s glorious World Cup victory at Lord’s in 1983 defeating the mighty West Indies, thus stopping the latter’s hat-trick moments after victories in 1975 and 1979; and in fact, the West Indies team is yet to win their third World Cup since then. I missed watching the movie on the big screen as moviegoing has been effectively stopped since the last two years, particularly for the elderly people like me. I grabbed the opportunity as soon as the great cricket movie was premiered on television yesterday. The movie too has suffered due to the pandemic: first it was slated for release in 2019 which, unfortunately, was postponed due to post-production reasons and after that the COVID-19 recurring bans and restrictions never allowed to make the movie reach millions of cricket fans. Finally, though it could be released in December 2021 its shows were again affected by the Omicron wave. Therefore, as it were, the movie could not recover

Humor: Successful Male Entry Into The Kitchen Requires An Analytical Mind!

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Although the growth of the nuclear families in the recent decades with mostly co-working spouses has made male entry into the kitchen a somewhat desirable proposition the two-year-old and extending Pandemic has become a gamechanger, making the said male entry an absolute necessity. The kitchen has assumed a never-before prominence as every morsel of consumed grubs has come to be necessarily home cooked, and the working-from-home spouses and often the idling males lounging inside their homes all the time have made it a study-in-contrast: the working or housewife ladies of the homes getting roasted all the time in the kitchen and the husbands gorging on the dishes along with their children or otherwise. Some discerning ladies of the homes have assigned them the job of washing utensils first as if to test their commitment and excellence, and then dishing out more serious responsibilities. In any case, the convergence of the life-partners as accomplices in the kitchen has become a fact of

Movie Jalsa: Poor Storyline And Half-Baked Characters Make It An Immensely Forgettable Viewing!

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Thanks perhaps to the conditional benevolence of the OTT streaming platforms some filmmakers, ostensibly under the pretense of being serious creators, get the rare opportunity to indulge in their experiments or otherwise while always managing to rope in talented actors to create a pre-release hype about their ‘darkly serious dram/thriller’ movies. They always prefer to choose female-centric themes or stories with female protagonists/antagonists, and most of them deliver their favorite ‘emancipation of women’ templates by making the ‘swear-word liberalism’ gender-neutral. They get the much-needed support too from similar or like-minded souls of the mainstream media who praise the movies to the heavens. Fortunately, the Amazon original movie ‘Jalsa’ that released on Prime Video on 18 th March, 2022, is totally free of that ‘liberalism’ while still sticking to the female-centric theme with three major roles of women protagonists/antagonists in the movie given to the immensely talented ac

India Play Holi Amid Frayed Nerves Over Russian-Ukraine War And Concerns For A COVID-19 4th Wave!

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The Festival of Colors, Holi, began in India with the symbolic burning of Holika (a demoness of ancient times representing the evil or the Satan) effigy last night. This festival is celebrated every year in the last full moon night of the Hindu calendar year. Today, the colors are submerging the country in a spirit of joy. The Indians righteously feel and justify the celebrations across the country as they have missed this for the last two years, and after all, this signifies the victory of good over evil. For the last one month the country has seen a return to near normalcy with all restrictions except for the mask removed, the schools/colleges reopening; and just when they felt that the Pandemic had finally entered the endemic phase came the WHO (World Health Organization) warning that the pandemic is far from over and it has been spiking globally again with more than 11 million cases new cases and over 43,000 deaths in the last week. Combine this with the Russia-Ukraine war raging

Book Review By Himakar Tata: The Cheerless Chauffeur And Other Tales!

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In his book “THE CHEERLESS CHAUFFEUR…”, Chinmay Chakravarty captures the different facets of the lives of middle-class Indians through 34 short stories. The humorous title of each story is indicative of the subtle and wry humor characteristic of the writer. Each story is a throwback on issues dominant in the India of the 1980s and 1990s. During that period technology was transforming lives in metropolitan cities. However, the social norms continued to remain mired in the India of 1970s.   The stories “THE RAIN DRENCH”, “YOU ARE INVITED (1 & 2)” are reflective of the hesitancy that came in the way of free interaction between men and women in the public. The 1970s was also the period when you had “leaders discussing poverty with glasses of expensive wine in air-conditioned rooms”. Many of the avowed radicals during their student days “left the left” in the 1980s (“A CIVILIZATION”).   It was also the era of shortages with “dirty-rich people in dirty-costly apparels waiting f

Ind Vs SL 2nd Test: Pant Hits The Fastest Fifty, Indian Batting Extends It To The Third Day!

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Source: BCCI Having all the time in the world India didn’t really need to hurry setting a target and so batted on till the 9 th wicket fell, and luckily extending the pink-ball Test match to the third day. Given their pitch-specific one-day cricket tactics India scored at a very healthy 4+ per over run rate scoring 303/9 in the 69 th over setting a target of 447 runs to win for Sri Lanka. This target is a tall order for the side batting last on any kind of pitch anywhere. The highlights of the Indian innings include the fastest fifty in Test cricket for India by Rishabh Pant (50) who achieved the feat in just 28 balls, bettering that of Kapil Dev in 30 balls; good opening partnership with Rohit (46) tackling the spinners well scoring all around the park including reverse sweeps, unfortunately missing his much deserved half-century; and Shreyas Iyer, the hero of the first innings, lapped up his consecutive second fifty of the match with an exciting 67-run innings. Except for Kohli (1

Ind Vs SL 2nd Test: The Pink Ball Blues Or The Pitch As 16 Wickets Fall On 1st Day?

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Source: BCCI As many as 16 wickets fell on the very first day of the Second and last Test match, a day-n-night pink ball affair, between India and Sri Lanka at the Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru today. Pink ball test matches have been a very recent addition to the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Test Championship (WTC) schedules and this is perhaps only the third match played in India so far. India demolished Bangladesh in the first ever Pink-ball test in Kolkata and then England in the second pink-ball Ahmedabad match. Normally the pink ball is associated with more swing, particularly in the twilight period when the lights come on, even though this is still not a proven fact. In this particular match more than the pink ball blues the pitch seems to have played a far pivotal role. The pitch has proved to be a turning one from day 1 combined uneven and variable bounce which helped both the seamers and the spinners. The way the wickets fell in heaps on the very first day the ma