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Brishti Bandyopadhyay

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Animal Sense

February 14: So you live in a quake-prone region and want to be prepared the next time an earthquake strikes. Unfortunately, science has still not come up with a way to predict earthquakes. But there's hope yet. Just visit your local zoo and observe the behaviour of the animals there.Astonishing but true. Animals remain even today, the best bet...

The Writer

December 9: Stanley "Tookie" Williams is an American writer of children's books. His books are cautionary tales, warning children to stay away from drugs, guns and gangs so common to certain sections of poor America.Williams has won wide acclaim and two literature prizes. But then Williams is no ordinary children's writer. He is a four-time murderer on death row...

The Night of the Women

March 19: A few days ago, the streets of Bogota, the capital of South American country Colombia, wore a very unusual look at night. Not one man was visible outside.Bogota's eccentric mayor, Antanas Mockus, had declared March 9, 2001, as the Night of the Women. All the city's men were ordered to stay indoors and leave the city free...

Little Heroes

January 31: Four-year old Parul Mishra of Lucknow (right) walked over a burning bed of coal to save her little friend Priyanka, who had accidentally fallen into it. Twelve-year old Sunil Singh and 13-year old Mukesh Kumar of Doda district, Kashmir, foiled a militant attack on their village.Two brothers, Prince and Ashish Kumar of Gaya district, Bihar, fought a...

Was Christmas Celebrated Thousands of Years before Christ’s Birth?

Was Christmas celebrated thousands of years before Christ's birth?
Did you know that the celebrations at Christmas might have nothing to do with the birth of Christ? In fact they may well lie in a feast called Sacaea that was celebrated thousands of years before Christ's birth. Over 4000 years ago, in the region that is now Iraq, a five-day festival with the exchanges of gifts, the staging...

Where Children Run Their Own Lives

September 9: Govindpuri, a sprawling slum settlement in New Delhi, spread over nine km, is like any other slum -- a congested maze of narrow lanes, uncovered drains and tiny houses. But it is unique in one aspect. The children living there have come up with an unusual way to settle their problems. They have set up Bal Panchayats...

Here Comes Pujo!

Durga Puja is the most important festival for the people of West Bengal, the Eastern Indian state that has been home to three Nobel Laureates - Rabindranath Tagore, Amartya Sen, and Mother Teresa - as well as Oscar awardee Satyajit Ray.Durga Puja, or Pujo as it is usually referred to, ushers in a sense of well-being, with Diwali following...

Many Ramayanas

Once, Aristotle, the famous ancient Greek philosopher, asked an old carpenter how long he had used his knife. Thirty years, the carpenter replied. He had changed a blade a few times and the handle a few times, but the knife was the same, added the carpenter.Something similar has happened to the Indian epic, Ramayana. Writers in different places and...

Illiterate Americans

October 6: Last week we had written about Ganga, a teenaged girl who taught the women in her slum how to read and write. These women are not an isolated case. A very large percentage of the Indian population does not know how to read and write. In fact, the mass illiteracy of its citizens is one of the...

Birds!!!

October 6: If feeding pigeons is your hobby, then the place to go is London's Trafalgar Square. With about 40,000 pigeon tummies to fill, you can be sure that demand will never outstrip supply.Trafalgar Square's pigeons are a major tourist attraction. Thousands of pigeons can be found in the square at any given time, which has a fountain and...

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