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MIND TEXT

September 2006
Volume - 1
Issue - 5

Editor :
Hariprasad R.C.
C O N T E N T S
REALITY CHECK
The  Choice is Yours...
FOCUZ
Mathrudevo Bhavah
REALITY CHECK
Reservation Issue
RTI CORNER
RTI Report
PUBLIC EYE
Musings on Onam
Lost Love
RTI CORNER

JAM
Just A Minute
TEA TIME CHAT
Centre for Public Tea-time chat reports
Policy Research
Vaikom Road, Cochin Reverberations
Kerala, India - 682 301
www.cpprindia.org
E-mail : edit@cpprindia.org CPPR is not responsible for the views expressed in this journel. Authors own resposibility for their articles
EDITORIAL

9/11=Inspiration or Nightmare?
Dear readers,
Do you think that was the weirdest question you have come across in a long
time? Wait a minute before you scroll down thinking this man is out of his senses!
What was the first thought in your mind on seeing this date? No doubt, it is one
of the most highlighted and dramatized date of the calendar in recent times. And it falls
on this month. And the reason requires no mention. It is said that many a war has been
fought in the name of women around the world. Well in some ways one gets the feeling
that among all the dates on that calendar on your wall; perhaps this 9/11 is on its way
to become the damsel of all. Already two wars have been fought in the name of it and
many more seems to be in the offing. But the point is rampant media coverage of the
crash of WTC has made the date synonymous with terror in minds of many people.
But let us not forget the other great incident that had occurred on this very date.
It occurred in the US itself with the difference that it occurred more than a century ago.
It was the famous Chicago Speech by Swami Vivekananda at the World Parliament of
Religions on September 11, 1893. If the incident on 9/11/ 2001 brought down the
dreams of thousands and the pride of a nation, the speech on 9/11/1893 opened the eyes
of a misguided materialistic world and raised the sagging spirits of one of the oldest
and greatest nations of the world. The contrast is stark and clear.
But we do not see any media staging a publicity stunt of this great event that
occurred on the same date at the same country but at a different time. So the question is
why are we so obsessed with the negativities in the world?
Many of us are not even aware that we have a choice to infer what is best for us
from the world. The influence of media is so strong that our choices are tailor-made
through them unconsciously to suit the interests of a few. We have the choice to perceive
9/11 as a reminder of the great speech that a great master delivered for the betterment of
humanity. We also have the choice to perceive that day as a symbol of the inhuman
practices taking place around the world.
It is up to each and every individual to decide whether their opinions are to be
ordered by the scripts of the media giants and MNCs or to see things in a perspective
that can benefit the entire humanity. Whether you want to feel inspired or terrorized
you can get both from history. But the wise people choose the best things in life.
So this time around let us see things in a more objective manner.
Remember objectivity is maturity.
Wishing all of you the best in life,
Editor

MIND TEXT 2 SEPTEMBER 2006


REALITY CHECK

The Choice is
Yours…
 ABIN THOMAS 
In February 1931, Winston Churchill described a man
as a ‘half-naked fakir.’ An old man whom we today call
Mahatma. Now, the world is celebrating the 100th year of the
famous tool he employed during freedom struggle – Satyagraha.
It was on 9/11/1906 that the seed crystal of this concept was
sown in the mind of the Mahatma. Later Satyagraha became a
spirited form of resistance that inspired masses to lend their
support to Gandhiji in India’s struggle for Independence.
But today 9/11 is remembered for all the wrong reasons.
The crash of the World Trade Centre (WTC) in New York is
associated with this date around the world thanks to the rampant
media coverage on the same. WTC, which could be described as
the crown of the materialistic heights that the US had achieved,
came crashing down five years back leaving memories of dread
and fear etched in the civilized minds of the world.
These two incomparable incidents symbolise two means
of protest. The former served in bringing peace to a chaotic
world whereas the latter scattered death and tyranny in the
lives of innocent people. Which of these should we choose as our
symbol for 9/11? Peace or blood-shed? Development or
Tyranny? The choice is subjective and individual.
Interesting information to quote is that a recent survey
in India indicated that the youth consider Bill Gates as their
role model. It seems Gandhiji was only a need of the time and
maybe a miracle. The ‘an eye for an eye’ policy of the free world
is surely firing the imaginations of the present generation. It is
to be noted that this opinion is prevailing even when 9/11
incident in the US is serving as a sure indication of the incapacity
of materialistic arrogance to bring peace and happiness to the
world.
Mahatma’s WMD – weapon of mass disobedience is a
sure solution to the riddle that the modern world is facing. But
to adhere to such a noble ideal demands us to transform ourselves
into dynamic personalities who are ever ready to serve the world.
History can lend us with both events that can inspire us to build
up a life of dynamism and vigour as well as dreadful memories
that can drain us of all our creative potentials. An alert mind
surely has a choice in choosing the best.
Hence this time around make sure YOU are choosing
what you mean from 9/11 and not any TV channel or
newspaper…not even this article!!!

- Abin Thomas (II DC B Sc Physics, S H College, Thevara)

MIND TEXT 3 SEPTEMBER 2006


FOCUZ

hê¥÷a÷lê gl:
 ANIL ROHIT 

÷kêJŒñÈ ohoí hêEl oùoãêjŸqñöTiñù Yöus h¼öq Eïj•jù ÷lˆiêTïiïjñªljñhêi


JqïöŒêˆïv gêjYhêöXªêXñ lïmô‹oïŠ JøjljñöT hêYêlïöE Jñ•ï HjïÀkñù
jêi d~ïYÓêt GJoôjŒïv ölsñŒïkë, JòTñYv ÷oîpïOþ÷YiñÈò. HTñlïv
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oêªïŠáù öJêûñÈ BJtnXYôù,AYñ Jñ•ð÷alïiêXú jê^hêYêlú!
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Eêh÷bihêXú, Jñ•ð÷alïiñöT. CYïpêoJêju hêYêlêiï BjêbïÀñªñ. gòhïöi, LùLöi;
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hê¥bthlñù HŒñ÷Ojñª B hpEði Dvdç Œ ïiñù zïYïiñù hêEl jòdŒïv
dê¦Iné ï iñLŸöq AYïQðlïÀñªYú lïkiù ‹êdïOþú BlïtglïiãñªYïEêkêXú
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Lê‡êjïiñöTiñù hpYôù. EïYê• m¦ñ¼qñù dñjñn÷EêTú ohYôù Jvdçï¼ñlêEêJñù?
MIND TEXT 4 SEPTEMBER 2006
Ehñ¼ú Hjñ hïZábêjXiñûú. ClïöT hê¦öh hê¥Yôù FOCUZ
BjêbïÀödç T ñªñÈò Fªú. dêÊêYá ÷kêJŒñ Eïªñù
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mïvdçhñûú. hêYêlêi JEáêhsïiù ÷imñÇoíñlïöus ÆòmïY
jòdù Jñjïmïv EïöªTñŒú hTïiïv JïTŒïiïjï¼ñªYêXú
mïvdçù. hêYêlïöus J ñJw BJêm÷ŒÀú DitŒïiïjï¼ñªñ.
fïùfJvdçEiñöT Fkëê EïihŸöqiñù ölkëñlïqïOþêXú Cø
mïvdçù InéïOþïjï¼ñªYú. CYïv Çoíñlïöus mjðjù hêYêlïöus
mjðj÷Œ¼êw öOsñYê¼ïiêXú jòdðJjïOþïjï¼ñªYú. BsTïÀñ
÷hv Dijù Dûú Fªñ ööffïqïv dsiñª hñdçŒïEêkñ
lioæñJêjEêi aêlðaú dñ¦öE÷dçêkñù öOsñYê¼ï
¼êXï¼ödçˆïˆñÈ “dï÷iŒê” FŸöE ÷kê÷JêŒj InéïiêJñù?
CYïEú BOêjáÓêt EvJñª DŒjù CŸöE, “ööh÷¼v
BÖ÷kê dï÷iŒêiïv JêXïOþïjï¼ñªYú Çoíñ÷alöE hTïiïv
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Eêù atmï÷ÀûYú ööaldñ¦öE ‹olïOþ hêYêlïöus
hpYôöŒiêXú”, FªêXú. hêJæïù ÷Lêt¼ïiñöT “A ”iñù
hêYêlïöE ÷JÿJZêdê¦hêiï Iné ï Oþ ï ˆñÈ lï÷môêŒj
ÇYïiêXú. ‘hat FtŒú ’ Fªñù ‘oï‚t ÷Æêöhê÷oêù ’
Fªñöhêö¼ ÷djïTñª oêiïdçïöus hEoæïök hê¥ oËvdçù,
“CøVïdçoú ösJæú” Fª dñjêX Üð¼ú EêTJù Bbêjhê¼ï
hê¦ù EïtlOïÀjñYú.
CYñ dsiêu JêjXù gêjYŒïök Oïk dñYïi ‹lXYJw
BXú. Ekë ö Y•ï÷usiñù DslïTù gêjYù hê¦hêXú Fªñ
ljñŒïŒðt¼ñlêEñÈ ÷fêbdòtlþhêi Hjñ ±hù
ET¼ñªñûú.AYú gêjYðiYöi Adpêoáhê¼ñªïT÷ŒÀñ
JêjáŸw öJêöûŒï¼ï÷kë FöªêjêmËiñhñûú.
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÷oîpŒïöus öJTêlïq¼êiï A iñù, A iñöT ÷oîplñù
Fªñù DûêJñù.

Anil Rohit - Student of SCMS College of Engineering (B.Tech Mech. Engg.)

MIND TEXT 5 SEPTEMBER 2006


PUBLIC EYE

lost
love

 SHERIN BIDAR 

Lost in the shadows of years


My first love and its bliss
All left is bleeding wounds
And memories stained with tears
Dreams betraying many an attempt
To bury the ghosts of passion
Little did I know ; immortal
Are the impressions of lost love

Desire, when expressed


Is at its best, as I realise
Writhing and twitching

Saw my eyes, he did


Never his reflection in them
Never did decipher
The unspoken in my words
Nor does he realise
Embers of ardent love
Still scorching my insides

Distant and cold he dwells


Untouched by sharp spasms
Unconsumed by the
Blazing fire
Little did I know; immortal
Are the impressions of love

- Sherin Bidar She is a final year student of B.A. English Copy Editing at S.H.
College, Thevara, Ernakulam.
MIND TEXT 6 SEPTEMBER 2006
PUBLIC EYE

Musings
on
Onam

 ASHA VARMA 

O ne look at the calendar for the month of September brings many festivals to
notice many festivals in Kerala. Kerala’s official festival, so to say, Onam, falls in this
month, followed by the birthday of the great reformer of the bygone era Sree Narayana
Guru, then Sree Krishna Jayanthi followed by the starting of the Navarathri festivals.
The concept of Onam is a topic much written about. From the time of civilised
culture, people in this corner of India imagined about a beautiful era where everyone
and everything is good.
Festivals of a nation have mush to do with the lifestyle of the people. As a well
established agrarian state with paddy, coconut, bananas and fruits, Malayalees found
the post-harvest season a very festive one. Traditional Kerala sadya has a minimum of
sixteen dishes (excluding rice)! This speciality of the sadya makes it a very laborious
process of cooking. But now with the disappearance of the formerly major agrarian
culture from Kerala’s social scenario, Onam has become as everything else a ready-to-
serve affair. But even then it is important that we have to keep up the spirit of the
festival.
I happened to spend an Onam at the Government Press, Trivandrum. It was
during the local body elections of 2001. I was the Returning Officer to Muhamma
Grama Panchayath in Aleppey district. The pre-Onam days were vibrant at the office
with nominations of candidates to the ten wards, their certifications, voter’s list
publication, etc. on one side and the department sponsored Onam Market of Vegetable
& Fruits on the other. I was sitting amidst fresh pumpkins, mangoes and bananas
while allotting symbols to the candidates of the different wards. Just when everything
had been drafted and sent one candidate complained of an error in the symbol given to
him. The symbol printed against his name was an elephant instead of a flower. So it
became inevitable to make the correction at the Government Press and that was how I
was there on the Onam day.
The capital of Kerala was in festive lights since it was a government sponsored
tourism programme. Everywhere there was the traditional cream and gold dress,
banana leaves. Kerala was at its best. Tourists were excited about the whole festival.
Many countries have harvest festivals, like the Red Wine Festival for wine yards in

MIND TEXT 7 SEPTEMBER 2006


PUBLIC EYE

Germany, Tomato Festival in Mexico, etc. but none like the Onam for an ideal King
and an ideal system.
Malayalees can be found in every nook and corner of the world. Kerala has been
exposed to different cultures from time immemorial. Lying close to the Arabian Sea,
Jews, Christians and Arabs all came to Kerala much earlier than in other parts of India.
Malayalees find it easy to adjust with other cultures and nations. Yet everywhere they
carry the fragrance of Onam. The traditional Kerala dress finds a grand day once a
year during Onam.
The boat races of Kerala during Onam had caught the attention of even our late
P M Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. The lucidity of the ‘vallamkali’ songs made him jump
into a boat and row while watching the boat race at Aleppey. Blessed with beautiful
backwaters and good boats, boat races are held in many villages during the Onam
season.
There is a whole lot of symbolism and myths associated with Onam that help
people imbibe many good values into their lives. One of the specialities of Onam is
that it remembers the great King Mahabali. It is an indicator as to what recognition a
good ruler can get in the mind of his people. He is considered to be a role model to
rulers of all times, be it monarchy or democracy.
The message of Onam is not to be seen as the utopian dream of a model ruler. It
is to be understood at its deepest level. Only then will the ideals and ideas imbibed into
the Onam festival find its way into the modern world to spread the fragrance of love
and equality. Let us not be satisfied by the nostalgic memories that Onam brings back
every year. Let us take inspiration from the past and strive to bring back the glory.
We Can! We Must!

Asha Varma - Deputy Director of Agriculture, Ernakulam District

MIND TEXT 8 SEPTEMBER 2006


RTI CORNER

MIND TEXT 9 SEPTEMBER 2006


RTI CORNER

THE HINDU - August 17, 2006

MIND TEXT 10 SEPTEMBER 2006


JAM

JUST A MINUTE !
 HARIPRASAD R C 

This column is intended to tickle your brain. In this column we will be


asking you one question every month. Mail us the correct answer within 10
days. Correct answer to the question will be provided in the next issue of Mind
Text.
QM1. He is known as an ascetic of freedom; an expert in both English
and Urdu, he was a law graduate who never practiced law. He authored the
Vidrohi Isa or the Revolting Christ. The British Government wanted to appoint
him as the head of the detective department. He was born without one hand but
wrote articles with the thumb of his right foot.
“In the first war of Indian Independence in 1857 my hand was amputated.
This birth I came without it,” was his comment on his physical condition.
Who was he?
Mail your answers to edit@cpprindia.org with subject titled ‘JAM.’

Reverberations
The articles of Mind Text are good. I think you can add some
variety to the e-journal by focusing on a wider range of topics.
It can help in getting more people interested.
- Sandhya
CA student
Tripunithura

Editor’s note:
We will definitely consider your suggestion. Continue your
feedbacks to help us improve this humble work.

MIND TEXT 11 SEPTEMBER 2006


TEA TIME CHAT

 ABIN THOMAS 

CPPR organised an interactive session with veteran politician Sri Henry Austin
at S H College, Thevara with the assistance of the NCC Army Wing of the College. The
session began with an introductory talk by Prof K C Abraham. Then the honourable
ex-minister gave a wonderful talk on the politics at the time of freedom struggle. He
HENRY AUSTIN said he was part of the freedom movement that tasted victory without bloodshed.
He asked all the students to benefit from reading Gandhiji’s biography. He said
he believed in the development of villages and not cities. Eminent people had joined
freedom movement after sacrificing their high-salaried jobs. B C Roy who resigned
his job for a social cause would be an apt example to quote. The politicians of those
times were also highly educated people like lawyers.
He pointed out that our strong faith in democracy gifted us with the most stable
government in the world. No dictator has been able to rule us. On the question of
reservation raised by V Sreejith, one of the students who attended the session, he
answered that India need more schools and colleges. Dr M S Francis, who was present
at the session, highlighted the need for scientific and technological methods to
development.
Sri Henry Austin was a minister of Indira Gandhi government during
emergency. He was elected to the Parliament twice and to the Kerala Legislative
Assembly once. He had spent six years in the US. He was also a trade union leader.
After the session we accompanied him to his home. He was satisfied with the
whole experience of sharing his memories and ideas with youth. He assured us that
today’s youth had the potential to win over any hurdle in life.

compiled by
Abin Thomas - (II DC B Sc Physics, S H College, Thevara)

MIND TEXT 12 SEPTEMBER 2006


TEA TIME CHAT

Tea-Time Chat
Report
· Glass waste - Any type of Glass waste management is a big success. While
can be converted to sodium silicate, which disposing waste, plastic waste is put in a
T.M.VENUGOPALAN is of high demand in industries. yellow bag, bio-degradable waste is put
(Consultant - Paper & Paper Boards · Plastic waste - any type of plastic in green bag and glass waste is put in red
and Solid Waste Management.) waste, in any gauge, can be converted to and so on. This makes segregation easy.
materials like bricks, tiles etc. The use of The person who uses the waste as a raw
such plastic is unlimited as it can be used material doesn’t have to segregate. Waste
for a variety of purposes from paving will no longer be seen on road sides and
roads to building houses. the pickers will not have to segregate in
 VINU 
the waste bins. All they have to do is to
· All other wastes like ceramics,
CPPR team had an interactive session chinaware, building debris, can be mixed take the green bag or the red bag as the
with Sri T M Venugopalan on 29th July with plastic waste and can be utilized for case may be.
at his R & D unit at Thammanam, building road barriers, foot paths, outdoor Though Mr Venugopalan had
Ernakulam. tiling, etc. approached the Cochin Corporation
The topic of discussion centred on · Agricultural waste – Wastes like authorities (from the Hon’ble Mayor to
problems faced in solid waste Banana stem, can be converted to pulp, the Collector) there was no response from
management and the solutions to it. Shri for use in paper mills as a long fiber. their side.
T M Venugopalan shared his ideas, Paddy husk can also be converted to useful Mr Venugopalan has over 40 years of
experiments and results with the CPPR value added product. experience in Paper industry and has got
team, on issues ranging from paper to · Industrial wastes – Wastes like solutions for almost all the waste related
plastic waste. calcium carbonate, gypsum, boiler ash, problems plaguing the city. The
The topics discussed were “solid waste coal ash, foundry powder, etc. can be conversion of waste paper into recycled
management” and how it can be utilized by converting them to useful paper and other products was
implemented from the grass root-level. products. demonstrated. The recycling of plastic
According to him there is no such thing The grass root level waste waste into useful products was discussed
as waste. We name it as waste since we management starts from the management and samples of the recycled plastic, a
don’t have any use (or rather we don’t of the waste generated from each person. result of his experiments, was also shown
make use) of it. Almost everything that Each person should be aware of the waste to us.
we call waste can be recycled or reused. generated by him. He should segregate The CPPR team included: Dhanuraj,
Waste can be categorised into and used and dispose it. For example, if a person is Thasmeen, Harishankar, Vinu, Jibin and
as mentioned below: disposing plastic, all such waste should Abin.
· Paper waste - Paper can be converted be segregated by that person itself and
- compiled by
to various products like visiting cards, then disposed.
Vinu - (He is a student of Government
paper bags, paper boxes, envelops etc. In some countries this type of waste Law College, Ernakulam)
MIND TEXT 13 SEPTEMBER 2006