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Joy of Making Indian Toys

Introduction The best thing a child can do with a toy is to break it. The next best thing is to make it. This book is about toys which children can make and break freely. The low cost or rather no-cost toys documented in the book are the everyday playthings of millions of Indian children, past and present.Strictly speaking, most...

The Chief Minister and the Butterfly

Where: Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, IndiaJuly 1, 2000: Indian politicians are mighty people, especially when they are in power. Even Nature trembles before their arrogant minds. Some years ago, when India was ruled by a Congress-I government, its environment minister decided to build a guest house in Manali. Why not, you may ask. It's a nice place. But there...

Satyajit Ray

One of India’s most distinguished film directors Satyajit Ray, was born on May 2, 1921 in West Bengal. Ray’s films are of universal interest despite the fact that most of his films were made in Bengali. His films are essentially about those things that make up the human race – relationships, emotions, struggle, conflicts, joys and sorrows. Satyajit Ray, the...

Women’s Army of Blood Donors

June 24: In a country like India, the lives of people are often lost because there is no help at hand. Many people think of it as fate and do nothing. But a group of poor village women have shown the way to the people of the southern state of Kerala, says a report in 'The Indian Express'..Sometime ago,...

A Royal Diet of Mangoes

 Jungle and Backyard Written by M. Krishnan Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiA thirsty, sweaty summer is here. You can see dogs with their tongues hanging out in the heat. Some of us would have done the same, but our tongues are busy tasting the king of all fruits - the mango. In fact, what makes summer bearable, is the...

Romance of Postage Stamps

In earlier days the stamps of British Guiana were printed by a British printer, Waterlow & Sons. In 1856, the stock of stamps was exhausted but a fresh supply had failed to arrive. So the postmaster hurriedly had 4-cent stamps printed locally using the existing designs, the seal of the colony – a ship and the motto ‘Damus Petimusque...

The Flood

Where: New Delhi, IndiaEvery day, Indian newspapers carry reports that large parts of Bihar, Bengal and north-east India are flooded, causing loss to human and animal lives, and property. This happens year after year. What is the reason for these floods? An indepth report from 'Gobar Times', a children's magazine on the environment brought out by the...

The Telegraph

In 1833 John Herschel, a British astronomer, went to South Africa to study the southern skies. He took with him a powerful telescope and many other instruments. He wanted to make charts and maps of the sky which people in the northern half of the world never saw. John Herschel planned to stay at the Cape of Good Hope...

Snake People

The Snakes Around Us Written by Zai and Rom Whitaker Illustrations by Shekar Dattatri Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiThis fascinating book gives us glimpses of the lives of the Irula tribals of Tamil Nadu, who are great snake catchers. The authors, who run a snake park in south India, have worked with these "snake people" for over a decade,...

Gems of Indian Literature

Excerpts from 'Books Forever' Written by Manoj Das Published by National Book Trust, New DelhiIndia's literary past is indeed great. It's a known fact that many of the parables of the Bible, the fables of Aesop of Greece, the folktales collected by the Grimm brothers of Germany and the tales retold by Hans Andersen of Denmark had their origin in India.We...

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