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Showing posts from 2009

The man to whom Rajasthan owes its food security

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Rajendra Bora Jaipur. Rajasthan too ows its gratitude to agricultural scientist Norman Borlaug who died at Dallas in Texas, United States Saturday last at the age of 95. The genetic plant breeder worked in Rajasthan in 1960s on ‘Intensive Agriculture Development Project’ bringing green revolution in the desert state by growing high yielding wheat varieties that more than tripled the harvest. Rajasthan was selected as the one of the seven projects in the country where the new varieties of wheat, developed by Borlaug in Mexico, were to be planted for advanced generations in 1963 under his personal monitoring after the scientist was invited to India by the Ministry of Agriculture on a suggestion of noted Indian agricultural scientist M.S.Swaminathan. Pali district was selected for the Rajasthan Project because better irrigation facilities were available there from Jawai Dam and Takhat Sagar Dam, recalls Rajveer Singh, retired Additional Director Agriculture. The Pali areas of Bali,

Will Rajasthan Police learn something from MIT project

Rajendra Bora Jaipur. It is full one year after completion of a three year collaborative project between the Rajasthan Police and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), United States. And it is the time for looking back and evaluate if the exercise really succeeded in enhancing performance, and improve public perception of the state police? The ambitious project was claimed to be the first rigorously evaluated police reform project in the world. The project started in September 2005 was over in June 2008. It was considered as a first genuine effort of administrative reform where a government department willingly opened itself to a neutral agency to identify the areas of concern in their basic field unit and rigorously evaluate the effectiveness of reform to provide a responsive, accountable and transparent police to citizens. During the course of project around 350 investigation officers – Inspectors, Sub-Inspectors and ASI’s – were trained at Rajasthan Police Academy

Gulshan Bawra: Lyricist with the magic pen

Rajendra Bora Noted lyricist Gulshan Bawra, whose song in Manoj Kumar’s film ‘Upkaar’ – ‘Mere Desh Ki Dharti Sona Ugle’ – turned out to be one of the finest patriotic songs in Hindi films, passed away in Mumbai today. Many would not know that the poet who also wrote ‘Yaari Hai Imaan Mera’ for Amitabh Bacchhan’s first blockbuster ‘Zanjeer’, had Jaipur connection. The poet, who thrilled the Hindustani Film Music buffs for about 40 years had his schooling in Jaipur. He was born at Sheikhupura, about 30 kms from Lahore in undivided India. His original name was Gulshan Kumar Mehta. His family was a victim to the partition riots where young Gulshan saw his parents being killed in front of his eyes. After the tragedy his sister brought him and his elder brother to Jaipur and brought them up. The family used to live in Raja Park area and Gushan had his schooling in the Pink City. After his brother got a job, Gulshan was shifted to Delhi where he graduated from the Delhi University. He sta

From an outsider to being one of them

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Rajendra Bora Maharani Gayatri Devi of Jaipur, hailed as one of the most beautiful women in the world, added glamour to the Pink City when she arrived in the town in 1940 at the age of 21 as a third wife of Maharaja Man Singh, a veritable prince charming. Unlike his two earlier marriages, arranged by elders, the Maharaja himself chose his third bride. It was a love marriage between Man Singh and Gayatri Devi. And like any love marriage in traditional Indian society this high profile wedding also faced several hurdles. The first hurdle came from Gayatri Devi’s family in Cooch Behar. Even her mother, herself a great friend of the Jaipur Maharaja, was hesitant to give her daughter’s hand to a man already having two wives. However, Man Singh’s love for the beautiful princes triumphed and Cooch Behar family agreed for the wedding. The biggest challenge to the proposed marriage came from Jaipur nobles and also from the then British Government of India. Oppositon to the third marriage

जोधपुर से जुडी हैं उस्ताद अली अकबर खां साहेब की यादें

राजेंद्र बोड़ा सरोद के बेताज बादशाह उस्ताद अली अकबर खान साहेब का इंतकाल शास्त्रीय संगीत के एक युग पुरुष का हमारे बीच से उठ जाना है. उनके सरोद के तारों की धुन के दीवाने हिंदुस्तान में ही नहीं पूरी दुनिया में फैले हुए हैं. उनके निधन की खबर सुन कर खान साहेब की स्मृतियों में खो जाने वालों में राजस्थान के जोधपुर शहर के संगीत के रसिक भी हैं. बहुतों को नहीं मालूम होगा कि खान साहेब का तत्कालीन मारवाड़ की राजधानी जोधपुर से गहरा रिश्ता रहा. वास्तव में इस सरोदवादक को अपनी पहली असली कामयाबी इसी मरू भूमि पर मिली. वे जोधपुर दरबार में संगीतज्ञ के रूप में नियुक्त होकर आये और इस शहर में करीब सात बरस रहे. जोधपुर दरबार में ही उन्हें उस्ताद की उपाधि मिली. ये वो ज़माना था जब राज दरबारों में संगीतकारों की प्रतिभा को बुलंदियां मिलती थीं. जोधपुर में अपने जीवन की पहली असली उपलब्धि हासिल करने के बाद सरोद के तारों के इस जादूगर ने कभी पीछे मुड कर नहीं देखा. वे संगीत में सफलताओं के एक के बाद एक बड़े शिकार चढ़ते ही गए. उस्ताद अली अकबर खान साहेब का जोधपुर प्रवास के दिलचस्प किस्से स्वर्गीय संगीतकार रामलाल माथुर सुन

Jodhpur is proud of its association with legendry Ali Akbar Khan

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Rajendra Bora Jodhpur. With the passing away of Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, who became a legend in his own life time, an era of Indian classical music has ended. The land of Marwar is proud of its association with the master of Sarod, a 25-stringed instrument, who brought the Indian classical music to the international stage. Ali Akbar Khan Saheb began his professional musical career in Jodhpur serving as court musician in 1940s. People of Jodhpur have always been proud of the fact that the Ustad started his journey to great musical heights from the land of Marwar.. In fact his first true achievement came when he was appointed the court musician in the Jodhpur Royal Court. It was also in the Jodhpur Royal Court that he was bestowed upon the title of ‘Ustad’ (master musician). Veteran music connoisseurs in Jodhpur still have fond memories of Ustad who, they remember, was a jovial fellow and a good cook too. He was provided with an official car from the court in which he would go on long

Marwari Horse brings glory to Rajasthan

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Rajendra Bora Jaipur. The world’s largest sculpture of a horse head, created by acclaimed sculptor Nic Fidian-Green in England, has made Rajasthan proud. The 25 ft long bronze, created for a wealthy Gloucestershire couple, is an image of Marwari horse, an indigenous breed of the sandy desert of Western Rajasthan. The equine enthusiasts who are trying to resurrect the breed from deterioration from more than a century of neglect during British rule are thrilled to receive the news of creation of the sculpulture depicting image of Marwari horse recognized by the animal’s inward turning ear tips. The sculpture, commissioned by Sir Anthony Bamford and his wife Lady Bamford, was recently erected at Wintershall Estate near Bramley in Surrey. However, Surrey is the sculpture’s temporary home while the couple is seeking permission from town planners for its permanent installation in Gloucestershire. The Marwari horse breed is believed to have been developed by crossing Arabian horses, p

From Residency to Raj Bhawan

Rajendra Bora British government made headquarters of its first resident of Rajputana at Rampura in 1818, in the then Tonk state, but the place just does not exist in any official record now. Rampura is a forgotten place. Even census reports or revenue records do not mention any place bearing the name of Rampura, says the recently released book “Rajputana Residency to Raj Bhawan,” the first work about Rajasthan that brings residencies and Raj Bhawans to the centre state of history. The authors of the book V.S.Singh, a senior IAS officer presently posted as secretary to the Rajasthan governor, and B.R.Dubey, an officer on special duty in the Raj Bhawan, however, succeeded in tracing the place chosen for establishing first residency in Rajputana to operate the newly established alliance between British paramountcy and Rajput states. They dug out some documents from Arabic and Persian institute in Tonk to establish that the present Aligarh, a tehsil headquarters, was the old Rampu

State Academies need revitalization for promotion of arts and culture

Rajendra Bora Now is the time for the state government to start homework for revitalizing various Academies. Although the Academies, like Lalit Kala Academy, Sangeet Natak Academy, Sahitya Academy and others, are autonomous institutions, they derive sustenance and effectiveness from the support of the government. Therefore, much depend on how those in power perceive these institutions. The rich heritage of Rajasthan in all forms of arts –both performing and non-performing- need state supported autonomous institutions not only for preservation but for grooming of local talents and promotion of arts. One of the failings of these academies has been that they have not only lacked desired financial support of the government but also lacked public support in their working. We have seen in the past that their headships had been distributed like charity. Unworthy heads of such institutions cannot bring any revolution. If we look at the past five years’ scenario in the state and the way affa

Summer vacation in private Bed collages off as Govt. follows NCTE norms selectively

Rajendra Bora Jaipur. The teachers and students in private Bed collages are braving grueling summer to complete their academic session 2009-10 with others. The State Government has instructed all the private Bed collages where admissions were delayed due to late counseling to do away with summer vacations and get their academic session regularized. The counseling process for Bed courses was completed as late as in February this year. However, The National Council of Teachers Education (NCTE), a statutory body formed by an act of Parliament, mandates that annual examinations could be held only after completion of 180 days of teaching. Therefore, to regularize the 2009-10 session it is prudent to hold classes dispensing with summer vacations, official sources say. All the concerned authorities have been instructed that in the collages where admissions were delayed and their academic calendar schedule of completing the course by June was not possible regular classes should be conducte

Why Jaipur has surplus staff of teachers when posts lie vacant in countryside ?

Rajendra Bora Jaipur. Everybody knows in the administration what ails government schools but none of those responsible for proving quality education is willing to correct things. The biggest problem with government schools in every district is posts of teachers lying vacant. Take for example the district of Jaipur. As many as 153 posts of teachers are currently lying vacant in this district alone. If this is the situation in Jaipur one can very well visualize the situation in other districts. Despite consistent demands from parents and people’s representatives for filling the posts the situation remains the same. The government schools, particularly in countryside and rural areas, have to go with vacant posts of teachers in spite of the fact that there is no shortage of teachers. Then why this situation persists? To find the answer one does not have to conduct any research. Government’s own official figures tell the story. The official figures reveal that while 153 posts of teac

Hindi Film Music has finished says legendry saxophone player Manahari Singh

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Rajendra Bora Jaipur. Name of Manahari Singh, who played saxophone and other instruments in more than 15,000 film songs, rings nostalgic bells in the ears of Hindustani Film Music (HMF) buffs. The maestro, around eighty and on dialysis, still plays the wind instrument with gusto transporting the audience to the golden era of film music of the last century. The old wizard is, however, “angry” over today’s film music scenario. “ Bada Gussa Aata Hai. Every thing has turned into ashes. Film music industry has finished. The ambience and atmosphere created by music directors, lyricist and singers of bygone era have vanished. There is a kind of bestiality pervading the contemporary film music”, commented soft spoken and humble Manahari Da while talking to members of ‘Suryatra’, a local group of cine-music buffs here on Sunday. The musician, who played for legendary music directors like S.D.Burman, Shankar Jaikishen, Kalyanji Anandji, Madan Mohan, O.P.Nayyar and R.D.Burman, felt that the

Where Slumdog Millionair fails to give correct answer

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Rajendra Bora JAIPUR. Who wrote the bhajan (song) ‘Darshan Do Ghanshyam Naath Mori Ankhiyan Pyasi Re’ ? asks the quizmaster in Oscar award winning film ‘Slumdog Millionair’. The quizmaster, played by bollywood actor Anil Kapoor, gave three options to protagonist, Jamaal, - Tulsidas, Meera Bai and Surdas. The protagonist picks out Surdas and the quizmaster proclaims the answer as correct one. But on this count the film by Danny Boyle fails miserably. The famous bhajan was not written by the saint Surdas 1500 years back but by fiery poet Gopal Singh Nepali for film ‘Narsi Bhagat’ in 1957. It is unfortunate that the film failed to give due credit to Nepali, said renowned music director Ravi, who composed Darshan Do song for ‘Narsi Bhagat’. The poet had brought a lengthy poem written with small letters spread on to two sheets of paper out of which I I selected three stanzas for the film song, recalls Ravi, who gave immortal songs like ‘Babul Ki Duayen Leti Jaa, Jaa Tujko Sukhi Sansar

Film with music by Vishwa Mohan Bhatt making waves in international festival circuit

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A scene from Empty Street Rajendra Bora JAIPUR. A film with music by Indian classical music wizard Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt is making waves at international film festival circuit. The movie ‘Empty Streets’, about life in limbo, a meaningless purgatory devoid of cause and effect suspended in a vacuous space between heaven and hell, uses musical score of Pt. Bhatt, winner of highest international music award Grammy, to heighten the sense of void. Pt. Bhatt scored the music for the film sitting in Jaipur using net. The film director Paul Booth would send scene script with exact timing of the shots besides rough cuts and Pt. Bhatt would sit on keyboard to compose the background score at his residence in Bapu Nagar. After composing the musical piece he would record the score at his studio in Malviya Nagar. He himself played the Mohan Veena and the key board for the recording. The recorded stuff, exactly matching timing of the each scene would be sent to the director in New York via the

Rise of Ambedkarite Movement in Rajasthan

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Rajendra Bora JAIPUR. When BSP, headed by Mayawati, is gaining greater political strength in subsequent elections thanks to reverence by millions of Dalits for Ambedkar Prof. Shyam Lal, former Vice-Chancellor of Rajasthan University, Jaipur and Jai Narain Vyas Universty, Jodhpur has come out with a new study on the movement spearheaded by the maker of Indian Constitution. In the exciting and timely study with painstaking research Prof. Shyam Lal, a noted sociologist who is currently serving as Vice- Chancellor of Patna University in Bihar, has profusely documented the history of what he calls Ambedkarite Movement in Rajasthan. Since the phenomenon cannot be seen in Rajasthan specific vision only, a general overview of Ambedkar’s efforts in awakening socio-political consciousness among Dalits has also been presented in the study that has been published in Prof. Shyam Lal’s latest book. Dalit assertion, liberation and emancipation are the themes that have come to centre stage late

Kochar: a multifaceted man

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Rajendra Bora JAIPUR. With the passing away of K. L. Kochar on Tuesday a multifaceted personality has gone into history. Every one called him ‘Kochar Saheb’. He represented the generation who valued personal relationship more than anything else. He knew how to win friends without imposing his will on others, the trait which ranks him one of the finest press advisors of any public figure in the country. He served doyen of Rajasthan politics Bhairon Singh Shekhawat as his press advisor thrice – twice during his chief ministrial tenure as once when Shekhawat occupied Vice-President’s office. Kochar conducted his duty as press advisor with dignity never making effort to sell a story to media by allurement or pressure. He knew what media person wanted more than anything else was ‘news’ and he was always there to help anyone get exclusive stories without interfering in the angle the concerned media person was taking. That is why his chamber was always remained crowded with journalists

Jaipur bids adieu to a fine legislator Giridharilal Bhargava

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Rajendra Bora JAIPUR. In the passing away of Giridhari Lal Bhargava the capital city of Jaipur has lost one of its finest sons. He was such a public figure and people’s representative that others would envy. A simpleton with no big personal ambitions but keeping service to the people at his heart was his strength which saw him winning electoral battles one after other till his death. It is no small thing that the BJP opted to field him for the Lok Sabha for the eighth time in a row. He truly lived up to the slogan his party workers coined decades back for electioneering “Jis Ka Na Koi Poochhe Haal Uske Sang Giridhali Lal”. He knew his constituency and its people like back of his palm. He was “Bhai Saheb” for all. He was most approachable. Any one could walk up to him at any hour of the day and night with his problem. Such an affectionate bonding with the people of the city made him what he was. Only with this affectionate bonding with the people of the city he took on successf

गाँधी और नेहरू : कितने दूर कितने पास

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राजेंद्र बोड़ा भारतीय राजनीति के आधुनिक इतिहास पर सबसे अधिक छाया जिन दो व्यक्तित्वों की रही वे थे महात्मा गाँधी और जवाहर लाल नेहरू. बीसवीं सदी में देश के राजनीतिक भविष्य की दिशा तय करने में इन दो व्यक्तित्वों की जो भूमिका रही वह अनूठी है. महात्मा गाँधी का नेहरू के प्रति जैसा लाड और आत्मीय प्रेम था उसकी मिसाल कहीं नहीं मिलेगी. गाँधी ने जो आखरी ख़त नेहरू को लिखा उसमे उनका वात्सल्य भाव उमड़ पड़ता है. 30 जनवरी 1948 को नाथूराम गोडसे की गोली का शिकार होकर चिर निद्रा में लीन होने से ठीक 12 दिन पहले 18 जनवरी 1948 लिखे इस पत्र की अन्तिम पंक्तियाँ हैं : "बहुत वर्ष जीयो और हिंद के जवाहर बने रहो. बापू का आशीर्वाद." और गाँधी के महाप्रयाण की सूचना आकाशवाणी प्रसारण पर सारे देश को देते हुए रुंधे गले से नेहरू ने कहा : "हमारे जीवन से रोशनी चली गयी है." मगर यह भी सच है कि देश की आज़ादी की जंग के इन दो योद्धाओं में जितनी अधिक आत्मीय निकटता थी उतनी ही उनके विचारों में जबरदस्त दूरियां भी थीं. देखा जाए तो इन दो महान व्यक्तियों के बीच सम्बन्ध हमेशां अजीब से विरोधाभास लिए हुए रहे

गाँधी और नेहरू के मतभेद उजागर करता एक ख़त

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(आजाद भारत का नक्शा कैसा होगा इस पर गाँधी और नेहरू के बीच गहरे मतभेद को गाँधी का 5 अक्टूबर 1945 को लिखा पत्र स्पष्ट रूप से इंगित करता है. गाँधी इस पत्र में अपने 'हिंद स्वराज' के विचारों का खुलासा करते हैं. ख़त का प्रमुख अंश यहाँ प्रस्तुत किया जा रहा है जो आज भी उतना ही मौजूं है.) चि. जवाहर लाल, तुमको लिखने का तो कई दिनों से इरादा था, लेकिन आज ही उसका अमल कर सकता हूँ. अंग्रेजी में लिखूं या हिन्दुस्तानी में, वह भी मेरे सामने सवाल था. आखर में मैंने हिन्दुस्तानी में ही लिखने का पसंद किया. पहली बात तो हमारे बीच में जो बड़ा मतभेद हुआ है, उसकी है. अगर ये भेद सचमुच है तो लोगों को भी जानना चाहिए, क्योंकि उनको अंधेरे में रखने से हमारा स्वराज का काम रुकता है. मैंने कहा कि 'हिंद स्वराज' में मैंने लिखा है, उस राज्य-पद्धति पर मैं बिल्कुल कायम हूँ. यह सिर्फ़ कहने की बात नही है. लेकिन जो चीज मैंने 1908 के साल में लिखी है उसी चीज का सत्य मैंने अनुभव से आज तक पाया है. आख़िर में मैं एक ही उसे मानने वाला रह जाऊं, उसका मुझको जरा भी दुःख नहीं होगा, क्योंकि मैं जैसा सत्य पाता हूँ, उस