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Chennai – the capital of Madras state pre-independence and the capital of Tamilnadu post-independence. This is one of the rapidly growing cities in the new world. I visited Chennai for the first time when I was in my sixth standard. Later, it became my second home when I came there for higher studies. My intention is to take the readers into a journey across time to witness the growth of Chennai.

Firstly, the below mentioned paragraphs are not mine. They are excerpts from “The story of Madras” written by Glyn Barlow, M.A in 1921.

About the origins of Madras:

Mr. Francis Day was pleased with what he saw; for Madras is not without beauty. In those idyllic days, moreover, the Cooum river, which was known then as the Triplicane river—and which even to-day can be beautiful, although for the greater part of the year it is no more than a stagnant ditch—must have been a limpid water-way; and to Mr. Francis Day, seeing it in winter, in which season the current swollen by the rain sometimes succeeds in bursting the bar, it must have appeared almost as a noble river, rushing down to the great sea—a river such as might well have deserved the erection of a town on its banks. The negotiations were successful: but the Naik was subordinate to the lord of the soil, the Raja of Chandragiri, who was the living representative of the once great and magnificent Hindu empire of Vijianagar; and any grant that was made by the Naik of Poonamallee had to be confirmed by the Raja if it was to be made valid. Two or three miles from Chandragiri station, on the Katpadi-Gudur line of railway, is still to be seen the Rajah-Mahal, the palace in which the Raja handed to Mr. Francis Day the formal title to the land.

About Fort St.George:

From the very beginning the settlement was called Fort St. George, but it was several years before the buildings were surrounded by a high and fortified wall. It was in no spirit of military aggression that the Company’s agents enclosed their settlement with a bastioned rampart, from whose battlements big cannon frowned on all sides round.”

St.George fort 1710

In 1746 there was a siege of a more serious sort. England and France were at war in Europe, and suddenly a squadron of French ships appeared off Fort St. George. After a week’s siege, the English merchants capitulated to superior force, and they were all sent to Pondicherry as prisoners, and the French flag waved over Madras; but by the treaty which ended the war, Madras was restored to the Company. Twelve years later Madras was once more besieged by the French, but unsuccessfully, and eventually the French leaders marched their forces away, quarrelling among themselves over their ill-success.

Fort St. George in the beginning was very small. Its external length parallel with the seashore was 108 yards, and its breadth was 100 yards. When White Town, which grew up around it, was fortified, there was ‘a fort within a fort’ (vide Map, p. 10); but eventually the inner wall was demolished. At various times the outer wall has been altered, but the Fort as we have it to-day is the selfsame Fort St. George nevertheless, a glorious relic of bygone times, and verily a history in stone.

About White town, Black town and Armenian Street:

Madras old 1750

The town that grew up outside the little fort was divided into two sections—’the White Town’ and ‘the Black Town.’ The boundaries of White Town corresponded roughly with what are now the boundaries of Fort St. George itself. The original Black Town—’Old Black Town’—covered what is now the vacant ground that lies between the Fort and the Law College, and included what are now the sites of the Law College and the High Court (vide Map, p. 10). The inhabitants of White Town included any British settlers not in the Company’s service whose presence the Company approved, also all approved Portuguese and Eurasian immigrants from Mylapore, and a certain number of approved Indian Christians. White Town indeed was sometimes called the ‘Christian Town.’ Black Town was the Asiatic settlement. The great majority of the original Indian settlers were not Tamilians but Telugus—written down as ‘Gentoos’ in the Company’s Records.

Armenian Street—which began as an Armenian burial-ground (vide Map, p. 10)—is an example. Armenians from Persia, like their fellow-countrymen the Parsees, have a racial gift for commerce; and Armenian merchants had been in India long before the English arrived. Enterprising Armenian merchants settled in Madras in its early days to trade with the English colonists, and the Company’s agents were glad to have as middlemen such able merchants who were in close touch with the people of the land. The most celebrated of the earlier Armenians in Madras was Peter Uscan, Armenian by race but Roman Catholic in religion, who lived in Madras for more than forty years, till his death there in 1751, at the age of seventy. He was a rich and public-spirited merchant. He built the Marmalong Bridge over the Adyar river, on one of the pillars of which a quaint inscription is still to be read, and he left a fund for its maintenance; he also renewed the multitude of stone steps that lead up to the top of St. Thomas’s Mount. His inscribed tomb is to be seen in the churchyard of the Anglican Church of St. Matthias, Vepery, which in olden days was the churchyard of a Roman Catholic chapel.

About Walltax road and SaltCotta:

The long delay in the building of the Wall was chiefly due to the fact that the representatives of the Company, being commercial men, naturally gave their chief attention to the Company’s mercantile business, and were apt to disregard the immediate necessity of expensive schemes which the Company’s military officers put forward as strategic requirements. When the Wall was first talked about, after the recovery of Madras from the French, the Directors in England, who always kept a tight hand on the Company’s purse-strings, declared that the inhabitants of Black Town ought to be made to pay for the cost of their own defences, and should be taxed accordingly; and the name of the ‘Wall Tax Road,’ which runs alongside the Central Station to the Salt Cotaurs, is a standing reminder of the Directors’ decree, while the road itself is an indication of the alignment of the western wall.

About Elihu Yale (Yale university), Chintadripet, Kaladipet, and Nyniappa Naicken street:

Elihu Yale, who was one of the early Governors of the Fort, imported some fifty weaver-families and located them in ‘Weavers’ street’, the street that is now known as Nyniappa Naick Street, in Georgetown. Some twenty-five years later, Governor Collet established a number of imported weavers in the northern suburb of Tiruvattur, in a village that was given the name ‘Collet Petta’ in the Governor’s honour—a name that degenerated into ‘Kalati Pettah’—’Loafer-land’—its present appellation. There was still a demand for more weavers, and eventually a large vacant tract was marked out as a ‘Weavers’ Town,’ under the name of Chindadre Pettah—the modern Chintadripet.

About Washermanpet:

Washermanpet is another such locality. It was not so called, as many people imagine, for being a land of dhobies (male laundresses). In the Company’s vocabulary a ‘washerman’ was a man who ‘bleached’ new-made cloth; and the Company employed a number of bleachers. The bleaching process needed large open spaces—washing-greens—on which the cloth could be laid out in the sun to be bleached; and Washermanpet covered a considerable area.

Old Madras

About North Madras:

Later, in compliance with a petition by Governor Elihu Yale to the Emperor Aurangzeb, the Company received a free grant of ‘Tandore (Tondiarpet), Persewacca (Pursewaukam), and Yegmore (Egmore). Still later, in the reign of Aurangzeb’s son and successor, the village of  Lungambacca (Nungumbaukam), now the principal residential district of Europeans in Madras, was granted to the Company, together with four adjoining villages, for a total annual rent of 1,500 pagodas (say Rs. 5,250). The village of Vepery—variously called in olden documents Ipere, Ypere, Vipery, and Vapery—lay between Egmore and Pursewaukam; and the Company, being naturally desirous of consolidating their territory, proceeded at once to try to obtain a grant of the place; but successive efforts on the part of Governor Elihu Yale came to naught; and it was not till much later (1742) when the Nawab of Arcot was lord of the soil, that Vepery was acquired from the Nawab.

San Thomé was acquired in 1749; and the story of the acquisition is not without interest. The names ‘San Thomé’ and ‘Mylapore’ are often used as alternative designations for one and the same locality; but in bygone days the two names represented quite different places. Mylapore was a very ancient Indian town, which seems to have been in existence long before the birth of Christ. San Thomé was a seventeenth century Portuguese settlement close by. It is an old tradition that St. Thomas the Apostle was martyred just outside Mylapore; and when the Portuguese first came to India some of them visited Mylapore to look for relics of the saint. They found some ruined Christian churches, and also a tomb which they believed to be the tomb of St. Thomas; and soon afterwards a Portuguese monastery was established on the spot. A Portuguese town grew up around the monastery; and in course of time the town became a commercial centre, and was surrounded with a fortified wall, and was the Portuguese settlement of San Thomé, over against the Indian town of Mylapore. An Italian dealer in precious stones who visited India in the sixteenth century wrote of San Thomé that it was ‘as fair a city’ as any that he had seen in the land; and he described Mylapore as being an Indian city surrounded by its own mud wall. Mylapore was thus in effect the Black Town of San Thomé; but in later days the two towns were combined. When the English came to Fort St. George, the power of the Portuguese was already waning; and the development of the influence of the English at Madras meant a further lessening of the influence of the Portuguese at San Thomé; and it was a natural consequence that San Thomé, including Mylapore, became a prey to successive assailants.

About Leith castle in San-Thome:

The remains of the San Thomé Redoubt stand within the grounds of ‘Leith Castle,’ a house that lies south of the San Thomé Cathedral. The remains are ruins, but the massive walls fifteen feet high and three feet thick, are suggestive of the purpose for which the redoubt was built. The ‘Records’ show that the San Thomé Redoubt, built in 1751, was a very complete fortification, with a moat forty feet wide, a glacis, and all the other works that are usual in respect of a well appointed building of the kind.

Leith castle

The Egmore Redoubt was a good deal older than that of San Thomé. It was constructed in the days of Queen Anne. It was intended, of course, for the special protection of Egmore; but in those distant days when trips to the hills were unknown, even Egmore was a health-resort in respect of the crowded Fort St. George, and it was officially reported that the Egmore Redoubt might ‘serve for a convenience for the sick Soldiers when arrived from England, for the recovery of their health, it being a good air.’

Egmore redoubt

About Pachaiyappa College:

Pachaiyappa’s College, a well-known Hindu institution, had its first beginning in 1842. Like the other colleges in Madras, it began as a school; the school was called ‘Pachaiyappa’s Central Institution,’ and was located in Black Town. The present buildings were opened in 1850 by Sir Henry Pottinger, an ex-governor of Madras, amid a large gathering of leading European and Indian residents; and for a number of years the annual ‘Day’ at Pachaiyappa’s College was an important social event. Pachaiyappa was a rich and religious Hindu, who made his money as a broker in the Company’s service, and who died more than a hundred years ago leaving a lakh of pagodas – some 3½ lakhs of rupees – for temple purposes. The trustees neglected the provisions of the will, whereupon the High Court assumed control of the funds, which under the Court’s control rose to the value of nearly Rs. 7½ lakhs. The original amount was set apart for the fulfilment of the terms of the will, and the surplus was assigned to educational purposes in Pachaiyappa’s name.

pachaiyappa college

About St.Andrew’s Kirk:

St. Andrew’s Church—most commonly known as ‘The Kirk’—was planned while St. George’s was being built; and it is remarkable that it was not projected sooner than it was. Scotchmen in Madras, as in other parts of India, apart from Scottish soldiers, have been many; and the names of a number of Madras roads and houses—such as Anderson Road, Graeme’s Road, Davidson Street, Brodie Castle, Leith Castle, Mackay’s Gardens—are reminders of the fact that not a few of the Scots of Madras have been influential; and at the time when a second Anglican church was being built in the city it was suggested to the Directors of the Company in England that the numerous residents who were members of the Church of Scotland ought to have a church too. The Directors, who realized no doubt the desirability of being agreeable to the many Scots in Madras, one of whom at the time was the Governor himself, Mr.Hugh Elliot, consented to the suggestion, and in 1815 they sent out a notification that a Presbyterian church was to be built not only at Madras but also in each of the other Presidency cities at the Company’s expense, and that the Company would maintain a Presbyterian chaplain at each. The Directors laid down no instructions as to what was to be the maximum cost of each kirk, but it was unpretentious buildings that they had in mind. At Bombay a large kirk was built for less than half a lakh of rupees, but for the kirk at Madras the Madras Government submitted a bill for nearly Rs.2¼ lakhs – some Rs.10,000 more than the total cost of St.George’s Cathedral, and the Directors were indignant. The Kirk, however, had been built; and it is one of the handsome churches of Madras. It is a domed building, with a tall steeple over the Grecian façade; and some of its critics have said that the combination of dome and steeple gives the edifice a strangely camel-backed appearance; but, however that may be, the dome adds beauty to the interior. When the Church was opened, it was found that the dome evoked disturbing echoes, and a large additional expense had to be incurred to exorcise the wandering voices. The steeple reaches a height of 166½ feet, which is 27½ feet higher than that of St.George’s.

Andrew's Kirk

The final word’s of the author:

But the greatest charm of Madras lies in its history. It was here that the foundations of the Indian Empire may be said to have been laid. The history of Madras is not a story of aggressive warfare. The settlers were gentle merchants, whose weapon was not the sword but the pen, and whose only desire it was to be left alone to carry on their business in peace. But the rising city was a continual mark for the hostility of commercial and political rivals, both European and Indian. It was a storm-centre, and the storms were often fierce; and the merchants were often compelled to meet force with force. Moreover, the merchants were men, and their doings therefore were by no means always without reproach; but, with due allowance for human weakness, the history of Madras is a history of which Madras may be proud. The city has grown from strength to strength, and in its story there is much inspiration. This little book has merely told the story in part; but it will have served its purpose if it has in any way helped the reader to realize that the story of Madras is the story of no mean city.

I guess I don’t have to say more. I hope you would have enjoyed reading and visualizing. For those of you who are interested to read the entire book, please click here – The Story of Madras by Glyn Barlow. M.A.

My verdict is purely my personal view. It is not done to influence any viewers to buy or ignore this book. Each individual’s action, after reading this short analysis, is processed in their own minds over which I do not exert any control – positive or negative.

Last week, Inferno reached the bookshelves globally. The propagation of the novel was more sinister than the propagation of a virus in terms of global reach. I purchased an epub version and went through it. Here are my thoughts on it.

Dan Brown is a very good storyteller who involves semiotics, art history, mythology, and action in a comprehensive blend of fiction that has plenty of twists and turns. Inferno is a 528 page, page-turner which is a good read. The storyline is simple. Robert Langdon, Harvard professor, Art historian, etc. wakes up with retrograde amnesia in a Florence hospital. He is in possession of something very sinister (at least he thinks so) and has to decipher it to prevent a multimillionaire named Bertrand Zobrist from unleashing a so-called plaque that will counter overpopulation.

This takes Robert Langdon across Florence, Venice, and Istanbul along-with a bald, high IQ lady name Sienna Brooks. With many twists and turns where friends become foes and foes become friends, they eventually fail to prevent the plaque from being unleashed. I won’t play spoiler by letting out the end but this is all so bloody Robin Cook-ish. Robin Cook is famous for his medical thrillers and I feel Brown has taken a cue from Cook’s book to venture into a new zone.

I won’t certainly pinpoint to flaws in the script but all my questions about the behaviour of a particular character was answered at a later stage in the novel. But for a novel of this big magnitude, you can allow small flaws. They are perfectly acceptable.

Final verdict – A good read if you like history, art, historical fictions, and semiotics. For people who hate these topics, you have Robin Cook. For people who hate Robin Cook, you have Colin Forbes or Clive Cussler. The twists and turns and the improbable escapes are very much Forbes and the virus stuff is very much Cook and the symbol deciphers are very much Dan Brown. Overall, a fine cocktail but that would not suffice for wine tasters like me!

It’s not different from other of Brown’s books. Every book of his follows the same pattern. A protagonist trying to decipher a puzzle, an organisation hell bent on stopping him, an organisation hell bent on helping him, an assassin in his trail, a beautiful lady to help him, museums, trains, boats, churches, anti-Vatican rants, secret passageways, near death, some important deaths, and finally the antagonist is none else but the one whom our protagonist knew from the start.

I feel I was reading a Vijaykanth movie script that was written by an excellent scriptwriter. If Robert Langdon is going to survive over for a few more books, they should come to India. After all, you have temples, mosques, churches and monasteries everywhere and there is no shortage of myths and secret passages. Be ready for it. It will come eventually.

If you want to read Inferno, you can go ahead and read it. Brown ensures that you are kept interested with loads of whoa-ish facts like ‘Hagia Sophia is 700 years older than Notre-dame’ which, in my humble opinion, does not serve any other purpose apart from making the location of Brown’s plot look great. Meenakshi temple is older than most of the buildings in medieval Europe. Just my 2 Lira for Brown’s thoughts!

Tea stains vessels, clothes and upholstery is bound to stain your teeth too, over a period of time. So if these beverages of regular consumption do discolour teeth, do you stop consuming them? That’s surely not the solution by any means! There are ways to manage discolouration of teeth caused due to beverage consumption. While some of them could be carried out at home, others would require visits to the dentists.

image

Understanding How Tea Would Eventually Discolour Teeth

Caffeinated beverages cause discolouration in the dental plaque and not the tooth itself. This plaque needs to be cleaned or flossed away within a period of 24 hours. In case it remains in the teeth, it hardens to form what we commonly call tartar. This tartar is a porous substance and absorbs stains caused by other food items as well. Eventually, your teeth look ugly and stained. In such cases you need to conduct a dental cleaning process which can effectively remove the tartar and the stains would disappear with them.

 Dealing with Tooth Discolouration

Some of the most effective remedies to deal with tooth discolouration  include the following:

Always remember to rinse your mouth thoroughly with tap water, every time you consume any caffeinated beverage.

Regular brushing and flossing of teeth is a must. Flossing is an excellent way to remove dental plaque on a regular basis. This will prevent formation of hardened tartars.

Make a paste with some common salt and baking soda. Use this to brush your teeth at least two times a week. Although this might not have a whitening impact on the teeth, it will surely help in removing stains.

Consider rinsing your mouth with a hydrogen peroxide solution after brushing. This will help in dealing with the stains much more easily.
You can also consider using an electric toothbrush for cleaning purposes. These are known to be especially effective in cleaning plaque and tartar.

Always use a good quality whitening toothpaste for effective reduction of stains.

You could also try some bleaching kits at home. Buy ones which contain hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide as bleaching agents.

Finally, if the stains continue to persist despite your best efforts, consider paying a visit to the dentist. He would carry out a complete cleaning of your teeth and gums and you can actually see the stains visibly disappearing. Remember paid dental procedures such as these might prove to be expensive and time consuming at the same time. So consider giving tea addiction a second thought.

Prasanna's Ramblings

I always had high regards to doctors. They save lives most of the time irrespective of the hardships they have to go through. They will be hailed as Gods when they successfully complete a surgery, or will be trashed to earth when they fail to do so. That is one profession you cant afford to take chances. I know a plastic surgeon, when he cut his chin while shaving was afraid to treat patients because he deals with children. That is the importance they give to their patients.

Doctor-listening-to-young-001

Irrespective of the line of practice they always have a serving mind. How can we negotiate with a person who is saving, reconstructing faces and lives day in and day out? But we still complain about the costs and the way they earn money.

I have this friend in Madurai who is a dentist. He was working as a safety scientist with…

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Last week, a patient visited my clinic. He was 8.5 years old. He walked in with his mom. His oral health was pathetic. I asked him whether he had visited a dentist anytime in his life. He said no. I asked him if there were any dental camps arranged in his school. He said that his was a government school and no dentists had come to his school.

He was in significant pain and had been under over-the-counter (OTC) medications for the past 2 days. My treatment plan for him included scaling, restorations, few extractions and few pulpal therapies to bring his oral health to an acceptable level. I explained everything to him and his mother and they were willing for everything. Only hitch – cost. I couldn’t make it affordable to the patient and patient was certainly not in a financial position to opt for the complex dental treatment.

I felt helpless. I put him on antibiotics and painkillers (of course, the free samples that are given to me by medical representatives) and asked him to come after 2 days. He went off.

Meanwhile, I had a ear pain and went to consult an ENT specialist in the peripheral area of Madurai. He was a very polite man and a distant relative to boost. On a casual note, I spoke about dental practice and the cost it incurs on patients which prevents most of the poor income group patients to neglect dental care altogether. He offered me a deal. He offered me a place in his hospital at a subsidized cost to set up a practice if that would help make some dental treatment affordable to his patients.

I came home, thought about it and decided that I am going to do something for the future pillars of this country.

Initially I thought about offering free preventive dental treatment to kids of the low-income group in my own clinic. However, two things stop me from doing that.

1. I have a heavy investment in this set-up which needs returns. If an unaffordable patient is going to take up the chair time in my clinic, my affordable patients go elsewhere.

2. The area where I practice – most of the kids have good oral hygiene because there are plenty of dentists around who will arrange camps frequently in schools.

After much of brainstorming, my idea was this – to set up a minimalistic dental treatment centre that will offer free preventive dental treatment (consultation, scaling, restorations, and pit and fissure sealants) to kids of the low-income group in a totally neglected peripheral area.

Next comes the question. How am I going to manage the time? I thought that out. Since my private practice requires much of my time, I thought of employing a recently-graduated dentist. Seemed okay. I have an aunt who is willing to take up the role of managing the centre as a service.

So the final picture:

  • Set up a free preventive dental therapy centre for kids which will also cater adults but at a subsidized cost.
  • Any kid who walks in gets a free dental consultation and free preventive dental therapy.
  • Monthly running costs for this clinic (rent, utility bills, and material supplies) will be contributed by me.
  • Any profit obtained by treating the adults and kids with complex dental problems will be utilized to pay the dentist and will be adjusted in the next month running cost.

I do not know how feasible that looks. However, I have supreme confidence that I will be able to do something to the society as a dentist. All I want to see are healthy smiles. Not hidden smiles.

The setting up of a dental centre needs money. I am going in for used chairs and furniture. I have booked a dental chair for INR 22K and my funds are done. Need around 78000 INR more. If there is anyone who can support a good cause, please do let me know. I am here to answer your questions. Thank you.

You can contribute here – Donate here via gofundme

Food has been a very important component of lives in this earth regardless of the nature of the organism consuming it. Hunger is common for all organisms and in some species, new borns are born with the skills to squander for food immediately after birth. Food has been interspersed with culture from time unknown. Food also intersperses with society and individualistic ethnic practices across the world. Tamilians do have a very ripe culinary history and it becomes important for anthropologists and social learners across the world to know about the culinary practices of one of the most ancient and diverse cultures in the world.

I was reading about Tamil food as I am interested in cooking. However, whatever I found, gave me the ingredients and recipes but no history. That’s when I found this book and few more books by Prof.Bhaktavatsala Bharathi on Tamil anthropology. History inspires me. I haven’t yet any of his books completely, but was impressed with the details provided in the books. Presently reading Tamizhar Unavu – An anthropological chronicle written by Professor Bhaktavatsala Bharathi, who works for Pondicherry Institute of Linguistics & Culture (PILC).

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This is a compilation of articles that were published in Kalachuvadu issue on September 2005 along with requested articles from eminent writers from Tamilnadu. Writers as diverse as Perumal Murugan, Po.Velsamy, Naanchil Naadan, Solai.Sundara Perumal, Pazhamalai, Melanmai Ponnusaami, Kazhaniyooraan, A.Muthulingam, and Shyamala Gowri have contributed to this book. This is just a partial list. The complete list includes few more eminent writers in Tamil.

The book also includes a foreword by Bhaktavatsala Bharathi which is very informative. Starting from age old practices of food consumption to the most recent invasion of the food industry by Mansanto, the historians and writers have given a wonderful account of Tamil culture. In fact, I should say, when I complete this book, I will opt for Tamilian cuisine anytime rather than the fried and fast foods offered by American restaurants and food chains. The cuisine and the culture and the society are intermingled and this has been analysed geographically and anthropologically. It is a book worth reading.

Try it – It costs INR 250.

You can buy it here – தமிழர் உணவு.

Trains or Tantrums

Fifteen days ago. Yes. Exactly fifteen days ago, the train I was travelling, came to a sudden stop. I though that someone must have pulled the chain. Of course, it was not to be. That was because of a signal. However, I was sleeping when it stopped so I did not know that the train had stopped because of the signal. I was aware only when I got up.

Once I got up, I went into the toilet to empty my bladder. The bladder was full because I had drank lots of water, the previous night because of the spicy E.sait biriyani. Ideally, for the quantity I consumed, the backside of my body should have been full. Forget it.

The train had stopped. It was 6 am. I got down and lit a cigarette. Yes. In the railway station. I can do that because I am a character in this blog post. You should understand that I am not real. If I am real, why the fuck would I bother to tell you my story? Even if you are interested, you should be asking me. I should not be telling it to you all by myself. Ah. Forget it.

I lit a cigarette. I just turned around and saw behind the platform. A village was seen at a look-able distance and  few birds were flying. When the birds flew, they were making some noise which I could not hear. I looked down while the smoke from my cigarette went up. I saw a trail of ants. The trail resembled a train that was running without any signals. When a small ant could maintain such complex movement with ease, how could humans like us falter in maintaining a good train?

Beyond a point, the trail of ants vanished. But the train of humans never vanishes. Maybe, that is the difference between the disciplined ant transport and the irregular human transport. However tantramatous a train can be, it stays within its tract just to stay in its track. If it moves a bit, it topples. If it turns fast, it topples. Ant train doesn’t.

Shit. I moved somewhere else again. I was smoking while the ants were moving in a straight line. When I finished the cigarette, the signal was green. The train started, ants kept moving, and I hopped on. The train let out a plethora of sounds, which, in my opinion, was very similar to the tantrum of a 2-year-old wailing boy child. It was foolish to relate this to that, but that’s how I do. No. I am not a fool. I imagine. You should remember that I am a character in this blog post.

During the sabbatical, which is today, I started to read a book by Peyon. Peyon is a Tamil ghost writer, who writes in Tamil. When I started reading the book, I felt like writing about it and I started to write about it while I am reading it. So the ability to write and read seemed interspersed but I am actually doing it at the same time. While one eye and one hand is holding the book and reading it, the other eye and other hand is looking at the laptop typing it.

Meanwhile, my wife is in the kitchen. She is not cooking but she is pregnant and is expecting a baby. There is no point in her being in the kitchen. But still she is there while I am lying down in the bedroom reading this and writing this.

I am in Tirunelveli today. I was here yesterday. I will be here tomorrow. Day after tomorrow, I will be here. Next Friday, I will be in Tirunelveli. It rained here. It rained yesterday. It will rain tomorrow. Day after tomorrow, it will rain. Next Friday, it will rain in Tirunelveli. Sunlight is scarce. The clothes are still wet despite their dryness.

While reading Peyon, I realized that I cannot write like him/her. However, when I write like him, I understand that I can write like him. So I wrote like Peyon and I wrote like him. Peyon and him are the same. Peyon is different from him because Peyon has a name. If Peyon did not have a name, Peyon will be him.

There is another Payon. He is in the website. Peyon is in the books. Him is also in the books. Payon and Peyon are almost the same expect for the single lettar. My wish is that. That Peyon, Payon, and Him meet with me. I want to see who writes better or me!

p.s: That’s what Peyon could do to you. Open-mouthed smile 

Peyon is one of the best contemporary writers in Tamil literature. He is a ghost writer. Not the classical ghost writer. Classical ghost writers write for someone else. Peyon writes for himself and his readers. His style is atrocious and his humour is unbeatable. Try reading Peyon when you find time. Rather, you can find time to read Peyon.

No ebooks please. Though you can download “Peyon 1000” – compilation of tweets by Peyon from his own website, the other books of Peyon, namely, Thisai kaatti paravai, Paambu thailam, and Kaadhal iravu have been published by Aazhi publishers.

They are not very expensive. Paambu thailam costs around 100, Thisai kaatti paravai and Kaadhal iravu costs around the same. Buy them. Worth it.

Between, the prelude was just a try. Don’t bash me for it. If you wanna bash someone, bash Peyon, Payon or Him. Comments are welcome.

Tamil or English?

Hi All,

To cut a long story short, I am facing problems across domains when I try to promote the blog in other websites. Tamilmanam and other Tamil blog sites do not accept my blog because it contains English posts and some English blog networking sites do not accept my blog because it contains Tamil posts. So the idea was to move all the Tamil posts to a separate blog. Also to classify the blogs based on language is proving to be an arduous task.

However, considering my infrequent blogging habits (I brush and bath regularly), I do not know how I can keep two kinds of readers satisfied. As I am entering the most productive phase of my life, I run short of time and to maintain and constantly feed three/four blogs may be more difficult than having that many girlfriends.

I tried to work it out, but as a reader of my blog suggested earlier, the genre’s are different and readers are different. So the blogs got to be different. Henceforth, this blog will my English one and I am starting a Tamil blog anew. I will not promise anything.

The link to the Tamil blog is here – மதுரக்காரன்.

The Tamil blog is just to keep myself happy. I do not want to give up writing in Tamil, though I know that the vocabulary is not as good as many of you.

All I request from you is a click on the blog and a read through. If you find anything that may be hurtful to someone, please let me know. If you think that the blog is worth reading, please share it with your friends. If its very bad, you could still share it with your foes!

Link to previous post – Click here.

So what did the Government of Gujarat (GoG) do?

They encouraged private sector participation (PSP). But that was not easy. Because of two reasons.

Firstly, the investment was heavy and the revenues out of that huge investment was minimal. Secondly, the GoG was in a very bad situation. They were working out a broken down power system which was supported by a broken down group of human resources. They were unable to spend on other areas, especially human resources.

So the objectives were reset:

  • Addressing the concerns of the investors
  • Creating a business environment conducive to improving the sector’s operational efficiency, financial viability, and service to consumers.

They intended to achieve this objective by the following means:

  • Greater competition at all levels of  the sector wherever practicable.
  • Corporatization and commercialization of existing sector entities.
  • PSP in the generation and distribution segments.
  • Tariff reform to cover costs and profits
  • An independent regulator
  • Transparent, reasonable, direct and quantified subsidies to vulnerable sections of consumers.

On paper, these may look easy. In real world, these objectives and modus operandi were ridiculed. Still, the goals were achieved.

The GoG passed a reform act on 2003. The Gujarat Electricity Industry (Reorganization and Regulation) Act in 2003 was passed by the GoG to enable the establishment of Electricity Regulatory Commission (ERC) and to reorganize the structure of the GEB. This paved way for the organized reorganization that happened in the GEB and the entire industry.

What was new in the Act? Next post. I promise that it will be a long one. Smile

durgamuthukumar

Crowdsourcing based nurtering

UYIRI

Nature writing in Tamil

செங்கொடி

கனவுகளுக்கு பதிலாக அறிவியல், கண்ணீருக்கு பதிலாக போராட்டம். போராட்டமே நம் இருத்தலுக்கான அடையாளம்.

cruzantonyhubert

experiences - travel - photography

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