The Hustler’s Playbook: How Hustlers Stay Focused

first_img Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Now Because you are a hustler, a lot of people are going to come to you for help with their projects. They will offer you all sorts of compensation for your involvement, from paying you directly to giving you an ownership stake in their project.You will be flattered by these offers. You will be excited by some of them too. Your excitement over these offers stems from the fact that you know how to help these people with their projects, and because you know that you have the ability to create value. In many cases, you will know exactly how to help the person asking you succeed in their venture.But in something very close to 100% of the cases, you shouldn’t get involved in other people’s projects.Here is what you need to know:Anything that isn’t part of your mission is a distraction. You aren’t going to have enough time to do all the things that you want to do when it comes to your own projects. Helping other people with their projects will distract you from your own projects, and it will push the results you need further into the future—or kill them outright. Avoid distractions by learning to say no.The time you spend helping other people with their thing is the time you are taking away from your thing. You are supposed to be doing your own meaningful work. That takes a massive investment of time and energy. By saying “yes” to other people’s projects, you are stealing time from your highest priority. Invest your time in your hustle.There will always be more offers and more projects available to you than you have bandwidth. The more successful you are, the more people will ask for your help. The number of people who need your help with interesting projects will always exceed the time you have available. You are not missing out when you turn down the opportunity to help with their project; you are missing out on your project’s success.Your laser focus on the meaningful work you are here to do should dominate your time, your energy, and your investments. Nothing should take precedence over your mission. Anything that takes your focus from that work—and your projects—is a distraction. Hustle requires focus.You are kinder by saying “no” to the people who ask for your help with their projects than you are by saying “yes” and not giving their projects the time and attention that someone else could invest.Stay focused on your hustle.last_img read more

Gujarat Congress in damage-control mode; to repeat all sitting MLAs

first_imgAs a major group, led by the leader of the Opposition Shankarsinh Vaghela, appears likely to join hands with the BJP, Gujarat Congress president Bharatsinh Solanki announced on Tuesday that all sitting MLAs of the party will be repeated in the elections to be held later this year.Mr. Solanki said the party high command had approved the proposal. “New appointments in the organisation will be announced when the State-in-charge Ashok Gehlot visits Gujarat on June 9,” he said.However, party insiders said the State party president’s announcement on repeating sitting MLAs was an attempt to reach out to some legislators who were reportedly in talks with the saffron party to cross over.Meanwhile, Mr. Vaghela, who has been skipping party meetings on election preparations, refused on Tuesday to comment on his possible return to the BJP. “Nothing today… but will tell you everything when the time comes,” he told media persons in Gandhinagar. Asked whether he would meet the State-in-charge Ashok Gehlot in Ahmedabad on June 9, he said he would meet anyone if he was called for a meeting.last_img read more

20 dead, 10 injured in M.P. fire

first_imgNearly two dozen workers were burnt alive when fire broke out at a cracker factory in Balaghat district on Wednesday afternoon.According to district collector Bharat Yadav, the incident took place in Kheri village, which is nearly 10 km from the district headquarters.“About 20 workers were killed and ten were injured in the incident. Eight of the injured persons have been sent to Nagpur for further treatment,” Mr. Yadav said.The reasons that caused the fire is net yet knownMeanwhile, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan announced a compensation of ₹2 lakh each to the next kin of the deceased.last_img read more

Haryana to set up vegetable price stability fund

first_imgWith an aim to address the problem of seasonal fluctuation of vegetables prices, the Haryana government will soon set up a vegetable price stability fund.”Perishable vegetables like potato and tomato cannot be stored for long and farmers have no solution to this problem. The fund will be set up to provide assistance to farmers in the event of price fluctuation,” said Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar.1,000 daysHe was addressing a press conference to mark the completion of 1,000 days of the BJP government in the State.Mr. Khattar attacked the previous UPA-led central government for degrading the quality of education and stated that the BJP was committed to imparting quality education to make the youth more employable.”We have fixed a target of achieving 80% grade-level competency of students by the end of 2018. At present, the competency level is 60%. Quality education and employment pose a big challenge for the government,” he added.Mr. Khttar said that the UPA’s ‘no detention policy’ till Class VIII had adversely impacted the education system. “To improve education, we have started a monthly test programme for evaluation of students in government schools. Under this scheme, 22 lakh students are being appraised. The government will open 30 new colleges in the next two years. We have already opened 23 new colleges in the past two-and-a-half years,” he added.last_img read more

Not a happy new year for non-Goan patients

first_imgPanaji: From January 1, outstation patients from the neighbouring districts in Maharashtra and Karnataka will have to pay for treatment in state-owned hospitals here, Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Saturday. “We are primarily responsible for Goans, and will take care of them. The charges are very minimal,” Mr. Parrikar said. The outstation patients, however, will not be charged for emergency services. “The charges will be for very specific procedures which do not require immediate attention. These are fixed procedures for which only 20 per cent of the package charged is being levied,” Chief Minister said. Non-Goan patients will also be charged ₹50 per bed, per day in the four major government hospitals. On Friday, Health Minister Vishwajit Rane had said that a health card issued by the state government will be used for identifying locals and non-locals. Reiterating that, Mr. Parrikar said, “You should have a card… That card is issued after proper identity and Aadhar card is linked with it. So automatically, one who has a card he gets a priority.”Meanwhile, the Goa state committee of All India Trade Union Congress(AITUC) issued a press statement opposing the decision to charge fees. “The argument of the Health Minister that nearly 30 to 40% patients are from outside the state for treatment in State-run hospitals cannot be accepted. Every citizen of this country is guaranteed health care facilities and the same is enshrined in the constitution of India. It is the responsibility of every government to provide proper health care facilities to its citizens and Article 21 provides for right to life,” said a press note issued by Advocate Suhas Naik, secretary, AITUC, Goa.last_img read more

We have built airports in areas where previous govts. failed to build roads: Modi

first_imgPrime Minister Narendra Modi claimed on Thursday that his government has built airports in areas where previous governments failed to construct roads.The Prime Minister was in Chhattisgarh on Thursday to dedicate the modernised Bhilai Steel Plant unit to the public and lay the foundation stone for a permanent campus of the country’s 23rd Indian Institute of Technology in Bhilai.Mr. Modi inaugurated an air service between Chhattisgarh capital Raipur and Jagdalpur, the district headquarters of the Maoist insurgency in the Bastar region of south Chhattisgarh. He also inaugurated the Unified Control and Command center in Naya Raipur area.IIT in BhilaiAt a rally in Bhilai, the Prime Minister said: “Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh tried hard to bring an IIT here during the last [UPA] government’s rule, but you know what kind of people ruled the country then. He tried for 10 years but achieved nothing. But when we came to power, with blessings from Chhattisgarh, we took an immediate decision [of sanctioning an IIT for Chhattisgarh]. ”The proposal for five new IITs, including one in Bhilai, was given the go-ahead. A modernised IIT campus, by spending hundreds of crores, will be set up here for talented students from Chhattisgarh and across India. ”The BJP government’s stress is on the technological enhancement which is why Digital India is being promoted. We are making airports in areas where previous governments’ couldn’t construct roads. ”My dream is to see a man, who is using ‘Hawaii Chappal,’ to fly by plane. Now the distance between Raipur and Jagdalpur has been reduced to 40 minutes from seven to eight hours.” This was the Prime Minister’s second visit to poll-bound Chhattisgarh in the last two months.“This area isn’t new to me. I used to travel on two-wheelers for organisation work here when this area was a part of Madhya Pradesh. In the last 25 years, I have visited Chhattisgarh almost every year and traveled to almost every district of this State,” he claimed.No mention of Opposition parties in speechMr. Modi, however, did not mention the Opposition parties, including the Congress party during his 35-minute lspeech. It was focused on development done by the Raman Singh government in the State and the BJP-led NDA government in the last four years.He claimed to have dedicated schemes worth ₹22,000 crore to the State people on Thursday that would create jobs and improve connectivity in the State, which has been battling Maoist insurgency for decades now..’Answer to violence is only development’He said:“Now, people are traveling more by air than by trains. There was a time when Raipur would witness hardly three flights in a day but now around 50 flights take off and land here. In the last four years, a large number of youths has joined the mainstream in Chhattisgarh and in other parts of the country. The answer to any form of violence is only development, development and development. Development can end all types of violence. We have tried to create an atmosphere of confidence by bringing development. “There was a time when Bastar would be associated with guns, bombs, and violence, but today Bastar is in news for an airport. This is Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s vision and Raman Singh has worked hard to take it forward. Every time I speak to him [Raman Singh], he comes up with a new scheme with enthusiasm. “The steel produced in the Bhilai Steel Plant had been used for constructing rail tracks across the country. Bhilai has not only made steel but made this country. This plant is the foundation of new India. The Nagarnar steel plant will also help the people of Bastar. We have made a big change in the law to make sure that mineral’s benefits are given to the local people which is why we set up District Mineral Corporations in every mining district. It has helped Chhattisgarh in getting ₹3,000 crore extra fund, which is being spent on development work. ”We are making sure that every villager gets a gas and electricity connection, a bank account, insurance, proper vaccination and LED bulbs. The Gram Suraj Abhiyan is a big medium of people’s participation. ”In Chhattisgarh, 1.30 crore accounts have been opened under the Jan Dhan Yojana, 37 lakhs toilets constructed, 22 lakh gas connections have been provided under Ujjawala Yojna, 26 lakh people have been given Mudra loan, 60 lakh people have been provided with insurance and 13 lakh farmers have been given benefits of crop insurance scheme. A new chapter of development has opened here and this light has illuminated every house.” Mr. Modi pointed out that the Central and State government schemes were focused on building the future of poor and tribals, and claimed that the government was focusing on increasing tribal income.last_img read more

Maratha quota stir: Two more die

first_imgA day after Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis reiterated his government’s commitment to granting quota for the Maratha community, two more personscommitted suicide allegedly over the issue on Friday.Umesh Atmaram Indait, 22, a resident Aurangabad’s Chikalthana area, allegedly hanged himself in his house in the city’s Choudhary Colony.In the second case, Dattatrey Tukaram Shinde, 34, a resident of Purandar in Pune district, reportedly threw himself in front of a train at the Daundaj railway station. Both had allegedly written suicide notes blaming the government’s ‘delay’ in granting reservation to the Maratha community.With these, the number of suicides attributed by the police , where the police have attributed the cause to be the reservation issue, has risen to six.Unemployment citedA suicide note allegedly written by Indait cites unemployment as the cause behind his taking the extreme step. “I could not fulfil the dreams of my parents. I am jobless even after completing my B.Sc.,” read the note.Meanwhile, speaking in Pune, prominent Maratha leader and Nationalist Congress Party MP from Satara, Udayanraje Bhosale lambasted the State government for dragging its feet over reservation to the Maratha community.“The government immediately ought to give reservation not only for the Marathas, but for the Muslim and Dhangar communities as well. Why have kept these issues on the back-burner for so long? It seems to have no willpower to resolve these pressing matters,” said the MP, who is a direct descendant of the Maratha warrior king Shivaji.Mr. Bhosale further exhorted the government to show the same alacrity in granting a quota for the Marathas as the Centre had done while pushing through the SC/ST Atrocities Act.‘Withdraw cases’“We are not demanding that the State scrap reservation for other deprived communities to accommodate us…but can the agitators [for the Maratha quota] be held responsible if their righteous anger boils over,” he said, demanding that cases against agitators be withdrawn lest there be more unrest in the State.Remarking that he was deeply grieved over the spate of suicides, Mr. Bhosale further said he would soon be holding a ‘Maratha Arakshan (Reservation) Parishad’ in which every district coordinator of the ‘Maratha Kranti Morcha’ would participate to decide on the future course of action to be taken by the agitators.Earlier this week, another youth Abhijit Deshmukh, 30, allegedly hanged himself from a tree outside his home in Beed’s Kaij tehsil.Days before, Pramod Hore-Patil (in his early 30s), took his life by jumping in front of a train in Aurangabad’s Mukundwadi area on the night of July 29. Patil claimed he was sacrificing his life for the ongoing Maratha quota agitation in a Facebook post he uploaded before his suicide.The trigger for suicide attempts for the cause of Maratha reservation began after 28-year-old Maratha reservation activist Kakasaheb Shinde plunged into the River Godavari in Aurangabad’s Gangapur tehsil on July 23, thereby intensifying the agitation. Meanwhile, in Ahmednagar’s Nevasa tehsil, a mixed group of agitators from the Maratha, Muslim and Dhangar communities staged a march demanding reservation while Morcha agitators blocked the Mumbai-Goa highway in Sindhudurg in the Konkan for several hours.last_img read more

New breastfeeding policy comes into effect in Rajasthan

first_imgA new breastfeeding policy has come into effect in Rajasthan for encouraging the rural communities to promote exclusive breastfeeding along with its early initiation. The initiative has been taken as part of the National Nutrition Mission-2022 on conclusion of the World Breastfeeding Week observed between August 1 and 7.Releasing the policy at Swasthya Bhavan here on Wednesday, Medical and Health Minister Kali Charan Saraf cited the figures of the National Family Health Survey-4, stating that the early initiation of breastfeeding in the State was only at 28.4%, while only 58% infants were able to exclusively breastfeed during the first six months of their lives.Mr. Saraf called upon the mothers, family members, medicos and paramedical staff to contribute for promotion of breastfeeding by adopting the methods laid down in the policy.The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), which has been working with the State government on the fronts of maternal and child health care, said the initiative should be utilised for reducing infant and neonatal mortality and improving children’s immunity towards infections. The policy is also expected to meet the nutritional needs of young children.UNICEF nutrition specialist Minakshi Singh expressed the hope that the policy, jointly developed by the Department of Women and Child Development and National Health Mission, would ensure “more intensive work” towards improving the current breastfeeding rates.Low percentageMs. Singh said while the State had made an impressive progress in institutional deliveries, which were currently at 86.6%, the early initiation of breastfeeding was low despite having doubled over the last 10 years. Exclusive breastfeeding during the first six months has also doubled during the last decade, as it was only 33.2% in NFHS-3.The new policy stipulates initiation of breastfeeding within an hour inside the labour room, supporting mothers to ensure the continued exclusive breastfeeding and counselling till two years of the child’s age.last_img read more

Plea for SIT probe into Hapur lynching case

first_imgThe Supreme Court on Monday sought response from the Uttar Pradesh police on a petition filed by the son of the victim in the 2018 Hapur lynching incident, seeking the probe to be transferred to a Special Investigation Team (SIT) with officers from outside the State.A Bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjiv Khanna gave the direction on the plea of Mehtaab, eldest son of the deceased, Qasim Qureishi, invoking his right under the Constitution to a fair and impartial investigation into the “barbaric lynching” case.Mehtaab, a resident of Hapur district in Uttar Pradesh, has also sought compensation from the government. His plea said his father was “brutally thrashed to death in a dastardly case of mob lynching on June 18, 2018.” The plea said his father was the primary bread-winner of the family, who earned a living by buying and selling goats.“The police officers investigating the case from the outset tried to create a false version of the incident in order to shield the accused persons from Bajheda village,” the petition alleged.Mr. Mehtaab claimed the police have constructed a false chain of events to turn the lynching by cow vigilantes into an act of road rage. Thereafter, the police did not record the statement of the surviving, injured witness, Samayudeen.last_img read more

Saradha scam: The wait continues even after six long years

first_imgSushmita Talukdar, a 42-year-old home-maker, switches off the television whenever she comes across a news report on the investigation into the Saradha scam. She has lost all hope that justice will be done in the scam that tore her family apart. Sitting at her home in Sonarpur, Ms. Talukdar emphasises two dates — March 17, 2013 and March 21, 2018 — that changed her life forever.On the first, hundreds of people gathered in front of her house, demanding that the money her husband Pawan Talukdar had collected from them as an agent of the Saradha Group be returned to them. The couple had to flee their home with their son and remain in hiding to escape the wrath of locals. They returned almost a year later when there was a death in the family. On March 21, 2018, the body of her husband was found on the railway track near Sonarpur station.‘Changed forever’“Almost six years have passed. What are we to understand [about] who is guilty and who is not? My life has changed forever,” Ms. Talukdar said. Before the death of her husband, Ms. Talukdar was a home-maker and now runs a business of Ayurvedic products for a living.Also Read  Basudeb Mal, another agent of the Saradha Group living in the same locality, knew Pawan Talukdar well. Hundreds of agents in Baruipur and Sonarpur area of the State’s South 24 Parganas, who collected money for Saradha and other deposit-seeking companies, ended up like Pawan Talukdar, he said.“Some are dead, some remain in hiding and others are trying every means to repay the investors. What have we to do with the investigation or the Centre-State tussle that’s going on? All we want is to redeem ourselves of the sins of collecting money from people. We never knew that we would end up like this,” Mr. Mal said.Mr. Mal also repeats one date that he thinks has significance in his life. On April 16, 2013 he, along with hundreds of investors and agents of the Saradha Group from different parts of the State, reached the residence of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in Kolkata and erupted into protest. “I remember carrying a poster: ‘Didi amader bachan (Didi save us)’.”18-page letterThe Saradha scam came to the fore in April 2013, when company chairman and managing director Sudipta Sen fled the State, leaving behind an 18-page letter. The letter had names of the then Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh and other political bigwigs. A flurry of political and administrative activity started from the third week of April 2013, with an inquiry commission headed by Justice (Retd.) Shyamal Sen and a Special Investigation Team by the West Bengal police, all being set up by the State. Sudipta Sen was arrested on April 23, 2013, from Kashmir, and Kunal Ghosh in November the same year. The collapse of the Saradha Group sent ripples across the neighbouring States of Odisha, Tripura and Assam, and in certain cases, the State governments handed the case over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).With the collapse of the Saradha Group, the operation of other deposit-seeking companies, including that of Rose Valley, which had allegedly raised about ₹15,000 crore (five times what the Saradha Group had raised) came under the scanner. On May 9, 2014, days before the State went to the Lok Sabha poll, the Supreme Court handed over the entire investigation into Saradha and other deposit-seeking companies that had raised money illegally from the market to the CBI.The investigating agency filed the first chargesheet in October of the same year, accusing Sudipta Sen, his close aide Debjani Mukherjee and suspended MP Kunal Ghosh. Since then, the agency has filed six more supplementary chargesheets, the last in January 2019 naming Nalini Chidambaram. Those arrested by the CBI in Saradha scam include former West Bengal Director General of Police and Trinamool Congress leader Rajat Majumder, former Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha MP and owner of a Bengali daily Srinjoy Bose, and the then Transport Minister of West Bengal Madan Mitra. All three are out on bail.After the CBI took over the probe, the Shyamal Sen Commission, set up by the West Bengal government to return money to the investors quickly, winded up its work. The State government has set up a corpus of ₹500 crore for returning money to the duped investors by imposing a tax on tobacco, but the commission could distribute little over ₹140 crore to duped investors.‘Return money’Subir Dey, convenor of the Amanatkari O Agent Suraksha Mancha, a platform of agents of different deposit-seeking companies, said the investigation in these scams, including Saradha, should be independent of returning money to those who have lost it. “The properties of Saradha and other chit fund companies are all there. The need of the hour is that both the Centre and the State governments should acquire these properties at the earliest and start the process of returning the money to the poor, who have lost their life’s savings,” Mr. Dey said. Scanning across documents at his office in Kolkata, Mr. Dey said that more than 200 people had committed suicide after being duped.Nira Naskar, 58, from Bariuipur Puranadarpaa village, made a living by doing odd jobs. He finds it difficult to recall the dates on which he invested the money but he is sure that he had put all his life savings of ₹2 lakh in the Saradha Group’s deposits. He now survives on what his two sons give him. Giving teeth to the serious fraud office  There are several stories like Mr. Naskar who have lost all their savings to the Saradha Group. Askar Mollaha, a vegetable vendor of Jalalabad in Canning, lost ₹40,000 and sees no hope of getting his money back.Tarak Dey, secretary of the Suraksha Mancha, said 20 lakh people are victims of the Saradha scam, and with all the deposit-seeking companies put together, the number could go up to crores. With the recent developments around the questioning of the Kolkata Police Commissioner by the CBI, representatives of the forum are going to step up their movement, demanding the return of money to all the duped investors. Nira Naskar , an investor at his home in Bariuipur  last_img read more

Sunita Biswal, daughter of former Odisha CM, joins BJD

first_imgSunita Biswal, daughter of former Chief Minister and veteran Congress leader Hemananda Biswal, joined the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) here on Saturday.Ms. Biswal was welcomed by Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik at his residence. Naba Kishore Das, former working president of Congress, who had joined the ruling party last month, accompanied her to Nabin Niwas, CM’s residence. “I am deeply impressed by the welfare programmes being implemented by Mr. Patnaik. He has been running a transparent government for years. My decision to join BJD is purely a personal one. I was not neglected in Congress. In fact, my candidature for an MLA seat was seriously being considered,” said Ms. Biswal.Reacting to the development, former CM Mr. Biswal said, “It was her own decision to join BJD. I have been associated with Congress for 60 years. My daughter’s decision has, however, saddened me. I want to make it clear that I am ready to shoulder whatever responsibility Congress would deem fit for me.”My daughter will work for her party while I am completely devoted to work for Congress. I cannot leave the grand-old party,” said the former CM.last_img read more

BJP, Congress face off over criminal cases

first_imgThe Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress on Friday sparred over criminal cases, including that of the rape of a minor girl, pending against the Congress candidate for Panaji bypoll, Atanasio Monserrate.The BJP women’s wing alleged in a press conference that electing Mr. Monserrate, who has been chargesheeted for raping a minor girl last year, as an MLA would render the State capital unsafe for women. The Congress in response asked BJP as to how he had been appointed as a chairperson of a government authority by late chief minister Manohar Parrikar even after being booked for rape of a minor by Parrikar government’s own police. “The people of Panaji do not want a person accused of rape as an MLA. The State capital will be unsafe for women,” Goa BJP vice president Kunda Chodankar said at a press conference on Friday. Responding to the BJP charges, Congress, Goa president Girish Chodankar accused the BJP of doublespeak.last_img read more

Maharashtra a step closer to opening up data

first_imgA year after it unveiled a new public cloud policy, the Maharashtra Government has transferred 10 terabyte (tb) of data to the centres it leased from private service providers. Translating to near one-crore files and documents, about 20% of the total government data stored on government-maintained centralised data centres have now moved to warehouses maintained by cloud service providers (CSPs). Once the data from all departments has moved, access to citizens will be made available, senior officials said.Senior officials said so far, data from the school education, social justice and revenue departments have been transferred. These include caste certificates, revenue records and details of the social justice department’s schemes. “The government’s central data centre is now working at 80% of capacity, which was not the case. When 10 tb has moved to the CSPs, the modalities of how and when people will be given access will be complete soon,” said S.V.R. Srinivas, Secretary, Information Technology. “We will have the rest of the departments transferring their full data by the end of this month,” Mr. Srinivas said.Last year, the government empanelled five service providers to store about 1.25 lakh documents and files various State departments produced every day. The CSPs, as per the agreement, will look after the data for the next three years. The empanelment is in line with a cloud policy unveiled with the idea of giving citizens access to State data. The CSPs include Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Net Magic, Control-S and M/s ESDS. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had formed a four-member committee under the secretary, Information Technology Department, to oversee implementation of the policy.The policy is compliant with the Union government’s National Data Sharing and Accessibility Policy, 2012, which mandates facilitation of access to government-owned shareable data in human-readable and machine-readable forms. The CSPs will provide the government with a fully-managed data warehouse to make it simple and cost-effective to analyse data using Standarised Query Language and Business Intelligence tools. The providers will also offer services that will allow the government to analyse and present data to citizens in a better way, senior officials said.last_img read more

Several Indian American ‘Promising Young Scientists’ Named Semifinalists in Science Talent Search Competition

first_imgThe Society for Science and the Public Jan. 9 announced the 300 semifinalists of the 2018 Regeneron Science Talent Search, with at least 70, or nearly 25 percent, of the high school students selected being Indian American or South Asian American.“All of us at Society for Science and the Public and Regeneron are thrilled to congratulate this group of amazing young people, as well as the teachers and parents who have supported them every step of the way,” Maya Ajmera, society president and chief executive officer, said in a blog post.“With each passing year, it grows only more critical for us to help open doors for this generation of future leaders,” Ajmera added. “The increasingly complex global challenges facing them appear daunting to many, but these students are ready and eager to take them on with creativity, persistence and an eye on making the world a better place,” she said.Read it at India West Related Itemslast_img read more

India Seeks Amnesty For Undocumented Workers In Malaysia

first_imgIndia has sought an amnesty for its illegal workers in Malaysia so that they can either regularise their stay or return home, Human Resources Minister M. Kulasegaran said.The matter came up for discussion during a meeting between Kulasegaran and India’s Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi on Monday.Read it at NST Related Itemslast_img

Indian-Origin Man Jailed In US For Pocketing $300,000 Bribe

first_imgAn Indian-origin former manager for a suburban bus agency has been sentenced to a year and a day in federal prison for pocketing nearly USD 300,000 in gratuities and kickbacks from contractors.Rajinder Sachdeva, 54 of Schaumburg, Chicago used his position as a department manager at the agency from 2010 to 2014 to corruptly demand the money in gratuities and kickbacks from IT contractors.Read it at NDTV Related Itemslast_img

Indian Consulate Issues UAE Travel Insurance Advisory

first_imgThe Indian Consulate in Dubai on Thursday released an advisory on Twitter reminding Indian nationals travelling to the UAE to take out adequate insurance to cover any expenditure in case of emergency.A statement said that the advisory was being issued “keeping in view the high cost of medical treatment in the UAE and also on the basis of some instances of Indian travellers meeting with unforeseen accidents involving huge medical bills, beyond the capacity of the traveller or their family members.”Read it at Gulf News Related Itemslast_img read more

Like Water For Kerala

first_imgThere are backwaters and then there are backwaters, an entire hidden river system teaming with life that you won’t find on any poster or the pages of a magazine. From our low flat boat, we boarded one smaller and gently glided through the narrow rivulets and channels, taking in the bright tropical foliage, coconut palms and soft leafy vines spilling over the waters edge. The backwaters are a river by another name, unless you see their intimate counterpart; these are the quiet, tranquil waterways, so still that when the boatsman cuts through the surface, the soft thick ripples make the water look like a bolt of silk rolled open.Floating along in the stillness it occurs to me that I’ve really lost my connection with nature. We can hardly go 15 minutes without checking our phone, I don’t eat fallen fruit or wear rope sandals, and except for happiness, my life is largely synthetic. But here on the off-the-beaten track waterways there is a simple life that beats in harmony with nature’s overflowing basket of abundance. We found tapioca trees growing wildly, cashew trees with their pretty bloom of crescent shaped nuts, and palms that yield 40-50 coconuts every few months. Rhythmically picked and stored, these coconuts roll through the seasons as needed, some for their sweet fresh pulp to make coconut paste or oil and others stored and soaked in water so that every six months they’ll be ready to weave mats, ropes and baskets for villagers.When we edged alongside the riverbank at the village of Poothotta, home to just a handful of families, a chubby little face greeted us with smiling eyes and wide toothless grin. In the dimly lit kitchen, she stood on the uneven concrete floor, clattering pans and occasionally dipping her fingers into a bowl of Upma with little black mustard seeds wedged in the soft dough.The kitchen had one light bulb swinging on a long wire over the stove where dried palms and twigs are stored during the long monsoon. We soon learnt this woman is the backbone of the village, turning her hands deftly to select a soft water-filled coconut and beating it against a slab of wood. Within minutes she was ringing out cupfuls of water and collecting the wiry coconut fibers in a bunch and stuffing them down the front of her checkered sari. As she plucked out the husks and began twisting them, the loose fibers took shape as finely woven strands, which she then tied around an old iron spinning wheel and within moments meters of tightly woven rope appeared.Watching her barefoot and smiling as she crafted rope on the soft mud, her young granddaughters appeared, smiling at us and singing songs. We were drawn by their melodious voices and short, cropped hair, framing their cheerful brown eyes, while they seemed curious that the coconut twines their grandmother was spinning matched Lee’s hair. We walked around the village as villagers pointed out little plants with the strength to heal kidney stones and cashew tree twigs used for underwater fishing nets as their warmth in the cooler winter months attract fish.Nothing goes waste, nothing that nature hasn’t thought of. As we sat sipping pepper tea on the riverbank, we wondered what disconnected life we had manufactured and pondered that maybe we’re the ones who have wondered off track.We climbed gingerly back into the low flatboats and I couldn’t imagine a prettier boat ride; white cranes flying overhead, fat jellyfish bobbing alongside us, cool water, surprisingly so clear that when our guide collected it in an empty bottle, we put ours aside afraid we might likely mix them up.South India is another world from the parched dusty north. Across Kerala, the government provides clean drinking water, the literacy rate is near 100 percent, newlyweds go to the wife’s house not the other way around and somehow this sort of social sophistication makes life in the city of Cochin, or even this little village, feel different. It seems our staunch little chubby coconut weaving, specialty local chef, entrepreneur and matriarch of the village really is just that. Oh, and her name means “sun,” with a happy heart and smile just as wide.We were told that Kerala is a land of contradictions — Fort Cochin has no Fort, the well known garden of flowers has no flowers and when our guide teasingly asked us if we’d heard about crocodile pond and we said, “what, no crocodiles?” he retorted “no pond!”I’d say the same for the backwaters. Wherever the water carries you, you’re hugged by their generous calming spirit. The backwaters, famous in tourism literature, really aren’t that “back” or secluded at all. The real adventure begins on the hidden waterways, where little streams carve their way through fields of palm trees, full of broad green leaves immersed in the water. The forest tells of lightening strikes, of heavy monsoons, of seasons of abundance and surrender. Mostly it tells the story of nature’s harmony, to people open to listening.  Related Itemslast_img read more