Saturday, October 30, 2010

What Really Happened in Iraq – Must Watch Videos

Here is the story of US occupation of Iraq that US does not want the world to know. The following five videos that was aired in the program “Dispatches: Iraq’s Secret War Files” by Channel IV. Dispatches analyze 400,000 documents obtained through “Wikileaks” and tell us ugly face of US in Iraq. In the pretext of destroying fictitious weapons of mass destruction, see how the US troops ruined Iraq by killing innocent civilians. The programme also features previously unreported material of insurgents being killed while trying to surrender.
With descriptions and scenes of killings, torture and bloodshed which may disturb some viewers. THESE ARE VERY GROSS VIDEOS. If you are light hearted please don’t watch it.
 
When will Americans realize that forcefully occupying a country and torturing the citizens of that countries will make more enemies ready to fight against America? If they had the ability to understand that they could not have invaded Iraq at the first place, right?

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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Our Interview in Alaivani

Here is the interview Deepa and I gave to Alaivani titled “The Authentic Journey Of Brijesh and Deepa: Life Full Circle Between India and USA”. The interview is published in three parts.
Thanks Jennifer for posting our interview.
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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Remembering Rajiv Gandhi

This was one of the first documentaries I have seen in my life – “India’s Rajiv” by Simi Garewal. If I remember correctly this was aired in Doordarshan soon after Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated. I was seeing this again other day and thought will share it in my blog for those who have never seen it and also for those who want to see this again. 
In the first part of the video, Indira Gandhi and others remember Rajiv’s childhood. Rajiv talks about his childhood and about his brother Sanjay Gandhi. 
 
In this part of the video, Rajiv talks about his passions – being a pilot. This part of the video also narrates Rajiv’s marriage with Sonia, his love for sweet food and about his tow kids – Rahul and Priyanka.
 
In this part Rajiv recollects more about Rahul and Priyanka; his love for Sonia and more. His initial apathy to politics, death of his brother that forced his entry into politics form part of this video.
 
Indira Gandhi’s tragic death, Rajiv ascend into Indian Prime Minister’s post, Congress sweeping the polls soon after he becoming the Prime Minister form part of this video.
 
Rajiv Gandhi’s vision for India as Prime Minister is shown in next three videos. 
 
 
Next video shows his rise as a world leader and the respect various world leaders had for him
 This video throws light into the various allegations against Rajiv made by the opposition and Rajiv’s take on those allegations
 This part of the video illustrates his life as an opposition leader and also lessons he learnt in five years as Prime Minister of India.
Seeing these videos in YouTube now brought back so many memories. Wish he was still alive!

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Political Stories From Kerala this Week

Welcome! Here I will be posting interesting political stories and political interviews as and when it happens in Kerala. I will be updating this page regularly and every news item uploaded into this page will be deleted after a week. Please come back to again for more. Last updated October 31th, 11:00 PM.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy remembering T M Jacob
Kerala Civil Supplies Minister T M Jacob died today. With his death Kerala has lost a dynamic leader and a visionary. RIP TM Jacob. Here is a brief political profile of T M Jacob.
Minister Ganesh Kumar regretting his remarks on V S Achuthanandan
Ganesh Kumar’s controversial speech
P C George controversial speech

Speech Chief Minister Oommen Chandy gave in Assembly while replying to opposition's allegation of corruption related to pollution control project at state owned Travancore Titanium Ltd.
Here is an interview with Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) spokesman and former minister M.M. Hassan, being interviewed by Dr Santhosh Kumar in the program "The Truth".
Come back later for more.....

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Friday, October 08, 2010

A Tale of an Indian Village

“The soul of India lives in its villages” – this was what Father of our Nation Mahatma Gandhi has to say about the villages in India. Many years have passed by after Mahatma made this statement and still that statement makes lots of sense. But are we taking care of the soul of India properly? We talk about the economic growth, GDP, foreign reserves, India becoming a super power soon etc but we can really grow without taking care of our soul – the villages in India? Aren’t they still in a very bad condition due to lack of scientific development and rapid urbanization?
Other week I along with my colleagues of Environmental Engineering department and handful of our students had a chance to visit a village twenty kilometers away from Vellore. The Christian Medical College (CMC) doctors have found that the drinking water system in this village is heavily contaminated with microbes and people are drinking contaminated water. The purpose of our visit was to study the water distribution system of that village and suggest engineering solutions to the problem.
The stupid “caste system” that is a curse for India is written all over this village. This village with a population of around 1200 people has two parts – a main village and an adjacent area demarcated for lower caste as “Harijan Colony”. The conditions of both these areas were pathetic but the condition of Harijan colony was pathetic beyond words. The main village has water supply for two hours while the Harijan colony has water supply for an hour a day. The storage tank in main village is double the size even though the population in main village is much less than Harijan colony. If you are unfortunate to born in the Harijan colony you are destined to use less water!
The villagers especially that in Harijan village collects drinking water from the main pipe by making a pit below the ground. See below the photo of a typical pit, the pipe from which water is collected and cap that is used to cover the pipe when it is not in use. The cap used in not water tight at all.
The open pit where the villagers collect the water. The cap covering the pipe is not water tight
Now see the photo below. There is a big open pit (that itself can be source of many diseases) that collects all the waste from couple of house that is never drained anywhere. See about 25 feet north of it there is an open pit with an open tap. What happens if a heavy rainfall occurs? The water from this big open pit flows into the pit made for collecting drinking water possibly contaminating the entire water distribution system.
A sewer pit on onside and drinking water pit on other side
Now the Harijan village has open sanitary sewer that runs perpendicular to the main entrance of each house. Also the water line made of plastic is crossing all over the place. See one such crossing below. If a small leak happens in the plastic pipe that is enough to contaminate the entire water distribution system. 
A pipe line crossing a sanitary sewer!
Another interesting thing – the metal stairs below is the access stairs to the overhead tank. The tank is supposed to be cleaned and chlorinated every fifteen days. Seeing the photo do you think that the tank is cleaned or chlorinated in the distant past? The stairs have rusted and it is almost impossible to climb to the top. When asked we were told that no cleaning was done for more than six months.
Stairs to the Water Storage Tank
The worst thing that struck me was that these villagers have no idea about the quality of water they are drinking. They get sick often but has not choice other than to use this water to daily needs. Now our aim is to make this a model village in Tamil Nadu by improving the drinking water and sanitary facilities and we hope we can make a difference in the life of these underprivileged people so that the “soul is India” can be given a rebirth.
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Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Manjalamkuzhi Ali Speaking!!!

Manjalamkuzhi Ali is the latest to cut the ties with the ruling CPI(M) in Kerala. Ali resigned his MLA post owning to the differences with CPI(M). Ali was representing Mankada assembly constituency for the last nine years in Kerala assembly. Here is an interview he gave to Indiavison News channel for the program "Mukhamukam" days before he resigned from Kerala legislature.
In the first part M Ali talks about his reasons to distance himself from Left Democratic Front (LDF) and ill treatment he got from the leaders of the ruling CPI(M).
In the second part Manjalamkuzhi Ali gives us some glimpse about his respect and love for Kerala Chief Minister V.S Achuthananthan. He answers the question - if his closeness to the Kerala Chief Minister has invited irk from other faction of the communist party.
Ali answers the charges raised against him by the top leaders of CPI(M) in this part of the interview
Ali’s plan once he resigns as MLA – he shares that in this part of the video
In the last part Manjalamkuzhi Ali expresses his views about the top political leaders of Kerala including Pinarayi Vijayan, Achuthananthan, Omman Chandy among others.

Is he going to be the last leader to cut ties with CPI(M) or more are going to follow his path? Let us wait and watch…

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Friday, October 01, 2010

ENDHIRAN – Call it a Showpiece of Indian Cinema

There was a festive mood all around the theatre that was showing Endhiran, the latest from the superstar Rajinikanth by the time we reached the theatre in Vellore. Movie started by 8 AM and as usual lots and lots of whistling and shouting. There was a special mention for VIT which brought huge applause from the VIT students in the crowd (a small part of the movie was shot in VIT).  Endhiran movie is made for Rajinikanth and the only actor who can do justice to this movie is Rajini and Rajni alone. It is Rajinikanth all the way, both as the scientist and the Robot. His acting is really superb and his age has not diminished any of his powerful mannerisms.
Endhiran has everything – comedy, action, sentiments and more important a story. Children will love this movie and if you have children aged three or above they will enjoy it better than you. It is a complete family movie with presence of Rajanikanth all over it.
First half is awesome, it went lighting fast. Second half was non stop action with some scenes never seen before in Indian cinema. The climax is the best part of the movie. If you don’t watch it you are missing something.
Songs were a visual treat but some of the songs did not match to the flow of the story. But the way the songs were taken – mind blowing.
Rajinikanth was at his best through out the movie. It was tough to believe that he was over sixty seeing any of those scenes. Aishwarya has lived to the tag why she is considered to be the most beautiful women in the world. She was breathtaking in the first half and the screen chemistry between Aishwarya and Rajinikanth was great.
Every technician has done his job to perfection – that is expected when each one of them is world class. This movie is definitely different from other Shankar movies. Like other Rajinikanth movies you can watch the movie many times, you will like it every time. This movie has “Super hit” written all over it from the scene one.
Endhiran is a different experience, it is not a movie alone, and everyone will miss “Chitti Robot” once the movie is over.It is no doubt Endhiran is going to be a yardstick each director wants to overtake for long time to come. 

(This post was written by Kaarthi Selvan, an alumnus of VIT.)

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