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A Problem, Naturally!

April 4: On April 1 or Fool's Day, India's capital, New Delhi, wore a deserted look. There were no public vehicles on the road. According to a Supreme Court decision passed two years ago, they were required to run on compressed natural gas or CNG, to ease the terrible pollution levels in the city.For two years, two successive Delhi...

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...

Dancing to Glory

It was a children's dance-drama festival with a difference. At New Delhi's LTG Auditorium recently, a group of 'disabled' children left the audience spellbound with their natural, joyful performances. Some of the children could not hear, others could not see or had difficulty walking. And still others were grappling with mental challenges. But that was no dampener to their...

Bidriware

Pallo latke gori ko pallo latke…The music of this famous Rajasthani folk song filled the air at the Crafts Museum in New Delhi where I went one Monday afternoon. Sitting in the verandah were rows of people who had displayed their work. What work it was too! My heart soared looking at all the things that they had crafted.It...

Made to Order

December 9: We've heard of gene therapy for humans. But for seeds? And yet, this is exactly what seeds in India will be treated for in the future. Thanks to gene therapy, the seeds will have made-to-order properties.Some scientists are introducing a gene (the element that gives hereditary characteristic to a living thing) from a weed into the Indian...

Which is the Most Abundant Fruit in India?

Mango orchards cover roughly 33% of the total area under fruit cultivation in India making it abundant fruit in the country.
Did you know that in India, mango orchards cover roughly 33 percent (1.08 million hectares) of the total area under fruit cultivation? In a hectare of land you can grow thousands of trees. And each tree bears, thousands of fruit! I will leave it to you to calculate how many mangoes the country produces! It's no wonder that the...

Camel’s Milk and Pet Registration

November 24: Hey, how about trying camel's milk instead of buffalo's or cow's milk with your porridge? Not very keen on the thought? Doesn't sound appetising?Did you know that many mothers, particularly in the rural regions of Rajasthan and Gujarat, offer camel's milk to their children? Unlike cow's milk, a camel's milk is rather salty and very thick. But...

The Little Magician

Five-and-a-half-year-old Bhagyanath can tell a story real well, especially the one about how a teacher caught him sharing a Coke with his friends in the school canteen. "I hid the bottle inside a book and when the teacher asked me to show what I was hiding, I opened the book. There was nothing there," says the bright-eyed boy."Indeed, there...

Excerpts from ‘A Parcel for the Postmaster’

Dak Babu had first come to Panarsa on transfer several years earlier. He had liked it so much that he stayed on. For the town he came from was noisy and crowded and he was never really happy in that hustle-bustle. In Panarsa there was perfect peace; it seemed as if the mountains which enclosed the little valley had...

A Beautiful Ship in the Sky

A beautiful ship in the sky! Planet earth with translucent water of the oceans, atmosphere, clouds...
In the boundless ocean of space, a beautiful ship sails serenely around the sun. Our earth – Lovelier than the moon, this fragile ship travels one hundred and sixty thousand kilometres every hour.Space is full of countless such ships. But our Earth is special. It is the only ship which carries life – the only ship with voyagers on board.Four hundred thousand different kinds...

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