Thursday, February 27, 2014

తెలంగాణ వచ్చింది.. బిడ్డ లేడాయే

Published at: 28-02-2014 04:07 AM

అమరుడు వెంకటేశం తల్లి వేదన
బతుకుపోరులో భర్త.. ఉద్యమపోరులో బిడ్డ బలి
తెలంగాణ కోసం నడిరోడ్డుపై ఆత్మహుతి
దిక్కులేనిదైన కన్నతల్లి..
ఆదుకునే వారు లేక దుర్భర జీవనం


http://www.andhrajyothy.com/node/70362

సిరిసిల్ల, ఫిబ్రవరి 27: తెలంగాణ వస్తే కష్టాలు తీరుతాయన్నాడు. బాధలు తొలగుతాయని కన్నతల్లికి భరోసా ఇచ్చాడు. తెలంగాణ రానే వచ్చింది. కానీ ఆ తల్లికి దుఃఖం మిగిలింది. కష్టాలు తీర్చుతానన్న ఒక్కగానొక్క కొడుకు కనుమరుగయ్యాడు. తెలంగాణ కోసం ఆత్మత్యాగం చేసుకుని అమరుడయ్యాడు. కరీంనగర్ జిల్లా సిరిసిల్లలో ఆత్మాహుతికి పాల్పడిన విద్యార్థి వెంకటేశం తల్లి విజయ దీనగాథ ఇది. భర్త నర్సయ్య అనారోగ్యంతో మృతి చెందడంతో బీడీలు చుడుతూ కొడుకును చదివించింది. అతన్ని ప్రయోజకుడిని చేయాలని తపించింది. పదో తరగతి వరకు ప్రభుత్వ పాఠశాలలోనే వెంకటేశం 500పైగా మార్కులు తెచ్చుకుని అందరి మన్ననలు పొందాడు. కొడుకుపై ఎన్నో ఆశలు పెంచుకున్న విజయ.. 2010లో అతన్ని ప్రైవేట్ కాలేజీలో చేర్పించింది. అప్పటినుంచి వెంకటేశానికి పరిచయాలు పెరిగాయి. తెలంగాణ ఉద్యమం తీవ్ర స్థాయిలో ఉన్న దశలో అన్ని కార్యక్రమాల్లో చురుగ్గా పాల్గొనడం మొదలుపెట్టాడు.

తెలంగాణ మీటింగ్‌లు ఎక్కడ జరిగినా వెళ్లేవాడు. దీక్షలు జరిగితే దండలు వేసుకొని కూర్చునే వాడు. బాగా చదువుకోవాలని తల్లి చెబితే.. అంతకంటే తెలంగాణ ముఖ్యమని బదులిచ్చేవాడు. అప్పటికే వెంకటేశం తండ్రి అనారోగ్యంతో మంచాన పడ్డాడు. తల్లి బీడీలు చుడుతూ ఇంటిని పోషిస్తోంది. చిన్న రేకుల షెడ్డులో నివాసం. తెలంగాణ ధర్నాలు జరుగుతున్న సమయంలోనే 2010 డిసెంబర్‌లో భర్త చనిపోయాడు. తల్లీకొడుకులిద్దరూ మానసిక వేదనతో కుంగిపోయారు. తండ్రి మరణంతో ఇంటిపట్టునే ఉన్న వెంకటేశం టీవీకే అతుక్కుపోయాడు. తెలంగాణ వార్తలనే చూస్తూ గడిపాడు. తెలంగాణపై జరుగుతున్న పరిణామాలు, తలెత్తుతున్న అనుమానాలతో వెంకటేశం కలత చెందాడు. రాష్ట్రం వస్తుందో లేదోనని ఆందోళనకు గురయ్యాడు. 2010 డిసెంబర్ 23న ఉదయమే తెలంగాణ ధర్నా ఉందని చెప్పి బయటకు వెళ్లాడు. సిరిసిల్ల బస్టాండ్ సమీపంలోని కొత్త పెట్రోల్ బంక్ వద్ద రోడ్డుపైనే జై తెలంగాణ నినాదాలు చేస్తూ ఒంటిపై కిరోసిన్ పోసుకున్నాడు. నిప్పుకణికగా మారి కూడా తెలంగాణ నినాదాలను ఆపలేదు. స్థానికులు అతన్ని ఆసుపత్రికి తరలించినా ప్రయోజనం లేకపోయింది.

అండగా నిలుస్తాడనుకున్న కొడుకు మృతితో విజయ గుండెలు పగిలేలా రోదించింది. ఒకే నెలలో భర్తను, బిడ్డను పోగొట్టుకొని అనాథగా మారింది. ఆమెకిక కన్నీళ్లే మిగిలాయి. మూడేళ్లుగా వారి జ్ఞాపకాల మధ్యే ఒంటరి జీవితం గడపుతోంది. 'తెలంగాణ వస్తే కష్టాలు పోతాయని చెప్పి... నన్ను కష్టాల్లోనే ఉంచి వెళ్లాడు. అమ్మా మన బాధలు తీరుతాయని చెప్పిన కొడుకు తెలంగాణ వచ్చినంక లేకుండా పాయే. తెలంగాణ రాష్ట్రంతో నా కొడుకు ఆత్మ శాంతిస్తుంది' అని తన మనసులోని బాధను 'ఆంధ్రజ్యోతి'తో పంచుకుంది. కొడుకు చనిపోయినప్పుడు అందరూ వచ్చి దండలు వేసి మేమున్నామంటూ భరోసా ఇచ్చారు. ఖర్చుల కోసం రూ. 25 వేలు ఇస్తున్నామంటూ టీఆర్ఎస్ నేతలు డబ్బులు చేతిలో పెట్టారు. కానీ లెక్క చూస్తే అవి రూ. 21 వేలే ఉన్నాయని విజయ తెలిపింది. ఆ తర్వాత ఎవరూ ఆమెను పట్టించుకోలేదు. బీడీలు చుడితేనే పూట గడిచే పరిస్థితి ఆమెది. తెలంగాణ రావడంతో తన కొడుకు ఆత్మ శాంతిస్తుంది... అది చాలంటూ సంతృప్తి పడుతోంది.

ఏ ఆసరా లేక పేదరికంలో మగ్గుతున్న వెంకటేశం తల్లికి సాయం చేయదలచిన వారు స్టేట్ బ్యాంక్ ఆఫ్ హైదరాబాద్, సిరిసిల్ల బ్రాంచ్ ఖాతా నెంబర్ 62312713609, విజయ పేరిట డబ్బు జమ చేయవచ్చు. ప్రత్యక్షంగా సాయం అందించాలనుకున్నవారు.. 9618902074 నెంబర్‌లో సంప్రదించవచ్చు.

Source: ఆంధ్ర జ్యోతి

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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

By PTI - WASHINGTON   Published: 26th February 2014 08:31 AM
Last Updated: 26th February 2014 03:16 PM

     Indian-American actor Kal Penn | AP

A first-of-its-kind exhibition, chronicling the vibrant history of Indian-Americans and their over 200-year-long journey from being "exotic outsiders" to being the "faces and voices" of America's future, will open at a prestigious museum here Thursday.

Christened 'Beyond Bollywood: Indian Americans Shape the Nation', the exhibition opening at the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of Natural History is aimed at deepening the understanding of the community.

Spread over 5,000-square-foot, the year-long exhibition will explore the heritage, daily experience and diverse contributions of the community members to the American society.

The highlighted artifacts include a dress worn by First Lady Michelle Obama designed by Indian-American Naeem Khan; the 1985 National Spelling Bee trophy awarded to the first Indian American winner, Balu Natarajan; and Mohini Bhardwaj's 2004 Olympic Silver Medal for gymnastics.

"This wonderful exhibition deepens our understanding of the American experience as lived by the Asian Pacific American communities who have journeyed from being exotic outsiders to being the faces and voices of the future. We are excited to present an exhibition that we hope will excite and inspire generations," said Konrad Ng, director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.

The exhibition recognises approximately 17 million people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent in the country, whose number is expected to climb to 41 million by 2050. One in every 100 Americans has a family connection to India.

Through a rich collection of photographs, artifacts, art  and interactive learning stations, visitors will experience the Indian-American story and explore the many dynamic roles the community members have played in shaping America.

Masum Momaya, curator at the Asian Pacific American Center, said that after going on display for at least a year at the museum, the exhibition will travel for up to five years with the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.

"Beyond Bollywood" is the first major national exhibition to focus on Indians in America.

"Despite the fact that Indians have been here since 1790 and now number more than 3 million, we've been largely left out of this country’s history," she said.

"Beyond Bollywood marks a significant step toward not only documenting the history of Indians in America but also imprinting this history onto the collective conscience of this country," she added.

Visitors, she said, will be surprised to learn that the first person of Indian-origin to set foot on Indian soil came in 1790, just 14 years after this country was founded.

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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Prime Minister's speech in Rajya Sabha on Telangana Bill: full statement

All India | NDTV.com | Updated: February 20, 2014 19:57 IST

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh speaking in the Rajya Sabha
on February 20, 2014.

New Delhi:  Amid massive sloganeering and chaos, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced a special package for Seemandhra in a debate on in the Rajya Sabha on the controversial bill which creates a Telangana state by bifurcating Andhra Pradesh. Following is the Prime Minister's full statement:

Mr Chairman Sir,

I have listened very carefully to the views expressed by the Leader of Opposition and all the other members who have spoken, especially those from Andhra Pradesh. The Home Minister has already mentioned the specific steps our Government will take to address the concerns of all regions of the state, particularly of Seemandhra.

I would like to make a few further announcements in this regard.

First, for purposes of Central assistance, Special Category Status will be extended to the successor state of Andhra Pradesh comprising 13 districts, including the four districts of Rayalaseema and the three districts of north coastal Andhra for a period of five years. This will put the state's finances on a firmer footing.

Second, the Bill already stipulates that the Central Government shall take appropriate fiscal measures, including offer of tax incentives to the successor states in order to promote industrialization and economic growth in both the states.  These incentives will be along the lines extended to some other states.

Third, the Bill already provides for a special development package for the backward regions of the successor state of Andhra Pradesh, in particular for the districts of Rayalaseema and North Coastal Andhra Pradesh. This development package will be on the lines of the K-B-K (Koraput-Bolangir-Kalahandi) Special Plan in Odisha and the Bundelkhand special package in Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

Fourth, I would like to reassure Honourable Members that if any further   amendments are needed to facilitate smooth and full Rehabilitation & Resettlement(R&R) for the Polavaram project, they will be given effect to at the earliest. Our government will execute the Polavaram project - let there be no doubt about it.

Fifth, the appointed day for the formation of the new State will be so fixed in relation to the notified date so as to enable preparatory work relating to personnel , finance and distribution of assets and liabilities to be completed satisfactorily.

Sixth, the resource gap that may arise in the successor state of Andhra Pradesh in the very first year, especially during the period between the appointed day and the acceptance of the 14th Finance Commission recommendations by the Government of India, will be compensated in the Regular Union Budget for 2014-15.

Sir, I hope these additional announcements will demonstrate our steadfast commitment to not just the creation of Telangana but also to the continued prosperity and welfare of Seemandhra.

Source: NDTV 

_______________________________________________________________

This blogger's opinion:

PM's announcement of special package to Seemandhra is to ensure passage of bill in Rajya Sabha. It has no details except referring to the Bill that was passed in Lok Sabha. The Bill is incomplete in respect of Seemandhra. And there is no guarantee that Congress will win let alone form government in next elections. Further the party that forms the new government is not bound to honour the promises announced by the previous government. PM should have included his announcement of package in detail in the bill. Then extend sitting of Parliament and voted in Lok Sabha. Then his package has validity, now it is like writing in the sand. As wind blows over it you can't read anything.

If Seemandhras really feel the hurt with the process of bifurcation (indicative of protests throughout the region) they should think twice before voting Congress or BJP in the ensuing election.
_______________________________________________________________

Read the following from Times of India: 
TNN | Feb 21, 2014, 05.57 AM IST

Seemandhra feels cheated, frets over special package

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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Chaotic endgame

Opinion Editorial

Updated: February 20, 2014 03:02 IST
End-stage mistakes grab disproportionately greater attention than blunders at the beginning. With the Congress and the Central government bungling at almost every stage in the handling of the agitation for a new state of Telangana, the mismanagement of the vote on the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill should have been no surprise. The chaos and confusion, and the blackout of television coverage, on the day the Bill was passed in the Lok Sabha all pale into insignificance when seen in the context of the larger failures to find a political consensus, and to reduce differences over crucial issues in the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. Whether it was due to a technical glitch, or a “tactical glitch” as the Leader of the Opposition, Sushma Swaraj, described it, the blackout of coverage by Lok Sabha TV was only a minor part in the Telangana endgame. Flip-flops and cynical political manoeuvring were part of the Congress strategy right from the beginning on the Telangana issue. Petty electoral calculations ensured that the party leadership led the government in the decision-making process. Indeed, too much was left to the very end as part of a deliberate strategy of buying time and averting a debate and discussion in Parliament. The highly charged spectacle of violence and disruption in the Lok Sabha over the Telangana Bill in the last few days is the culmination of the cumulative mistakes of the Congress and the Centre. 

If the Congress can take any credit from these sordid happenings it is in the browbeating and arm-twisting of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Although the BJP had a pronounced pro-Telangana stance even before the Congress committed itself to the bifurcation, the party resorted to doublespeak on the issue in an attempt to discomfit the Congress. But later the Congress managed to put the BJP in a fix, and eventually to lend support to the Bill. The two parties appeared to have read each other’s mind very well: to blame the other for any failure to pass the Bill. The BJP blinked first. The party, which did not have substantial political stakes in Andhra Pradesh, was hoping the Congress would alienate both pro-Telangana and Seemandhra sections if it failed to push the Bill through. But there was also the danger that the Congress might turn around and blame the BJP for its doublespeak and allowing the Bill to lapse. In the end, the two parties appear to have decided to share the credit for creating Telangana rather than blame each other for failing to have it passed. Irrespective of how the two parties manoeuvre the Bill through the Rajya Sabha, there is very little comfort to be had from such bipartisanship. 

Source: The Hindu

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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Lights, Camera off, Action: That’s the scene in LS as it passes Bill to split Andhra Pradesh

Express News Service | New Delhi | February 19, 2014 2:21 am

The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill, 2014 was adopted by voice vote along with several official amendments. (PTI Photo)
The Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill, 2014 was adopted by voice
vote along with several official amendments. (PTI Photo)

The contentious bill that will split Andhra Pradesh and allow the creation of Telangana, India’s 29th state, made it through the Lok Sabha Tuesday despite opposition, tumultuous scenes and a controversial “blackout” of the live TV broadcast of the proceedings.

The house passed the Andhra Pradesh Re-organisation Bill, 2014, by voice vote even as those opposed to it demanded a division vote and termed the process a “sham” and a “black day for democracy”.

Telanganasplit_475

Around 3.10 pm, Lok Sabha TV stopped showing the live feed of proceedings in the house as Speaker Meira Kumar went ahead with the process of passing the Bill and then moving amendments pushed by members from across parties.

The government also moved a series of official amendments after leader of opposition Sushma Swaraj indicated that her party backed passing the Bill. Only Swaraj and pro-Telangana Union minister Jaipal Reddy of the Congress spoke briefly on the Bill.

Armed with posters, MPs from the CPI(M) and a few others from Andhra Pradesh stormed the well and shouted slogans against the bifurcation of the state through the proceedings, rendering the Speaker’s words inaudible.

One of them tore a copy of the Bill and flung its pieces in the air.

Telanganasplit2_475

A number of amendments moved by MPs, notably Saugata Roy of Trinamool Congress and Asaduddin Owaisi of AIMM, were defeated by voice vote even as both demanded a division vote, which the speaker did not allow.

Instead, the speaker resorted to a “headcount” of MPs for and against the Bill and the amendments by asking them to stand up — a move Roy and Owaisi protested against.

“We are not a herd of sheep, we protest this move by you, madam. We want division vote,” Roy was heard shouting. “The idea that is India is being challenged today.”

Seeing that the opposition BJP did not join the protest, a number of protesting MPs too stormed the well and alleged that both the government and the opposition had reached an understanding “to pass the bill by flouting established processes”.

Independent MP from Assam, S K Bwiswmuthiary chanted anti-bifurcation slogans through the 90-minute process.

But the fact that there was no live broadcast of the proceedings visibly irked a number of MPs who shouted that it was “a black day for democracy”.

The TMC’s Roy also lodged a protest in writing saying that Rule 367 had been flouted by not going for a division vote.

The ruckus continued nonetheless as Shiv Sena MPs along with SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav stood up to join the protests.

Telangana_475

With both Rahul and Sonia Gandhi in the House, Congress MPs Sanjay Nirupam and Mahabal Mishra moved to the well ostensibly to assuage the protesting MPs. Former minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and Finance Minister P Chidambaram were seen directing the treasury benches in their participation in the voice voting.

The Bill will now be brought to the Rajya Sabha.

Union minister from Andhra Pradesh, K Chiranjeevi, told reporters that while he had no intention of resigning at the moment, he would join in to stop the bill from being passed in the upper house.


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Monday, February 17, 2014

A Cruel Twist of Fate

By K Naresh Kumar - HYDERABAD

Published: 17th February 2014 09:12 AM        Last Updated: 17th February 2014 09:20 AM

As a writer, playwright and screen play specialist, Vijay Tendulkar, obviously needs no introduction. In his writing career spanning more than five decades, Tendulkar has written 27 full-length plays and 25 one-act plays. Several of his plays have proven to be Marathi theatre classics. His plays have been translated and performed in many Indian languages.

One such play Hatt Teri Kismet, translated by Vasant Dev into Hindi, was staged at Lamakaan on Saturday night by Udaan Performing Arts. Originally written in the ‘70s, this play, a political satire in essence, talks about the unabashed addiction of power politics. Smartly customised to suit the current situation, the theatre group made it very contemporary and interesting.

In what seems to be turning into a popular format of Udaan - just two main characters on stage - the 70-minute play takes off right from the beginning when an out-of-power Chief Minister (Saurabh Gharipurikar) is shown plotting his return to the coveted chair. He comes in contact with an aam aadmi (Ashutosh Patwardhan) in the process, who quizzes him on various issues -- most of them trying to understand how these scums operate in society. The Chief Minister-in-waiting boasts about his survival in the quicksand of politics and how he is always self-centred and focused, often at the cost of his family and their desires. In fact, some of the comments the politician makes are dangerously close to reality -- especially when he says that ‘all that he does is strengthen the hands of the PM who is otherwise dumb and controlled by the Delhi madam’.

The unexpected twist comes when the politician decides to exchange his dress with that of the commoner when he sees an angry crowd approaching him and wants to escape their wrath. Along with the costumes, the faces also get inter-changed and voila! All hell breaks loose. This is the first swipe of bad luck that affects the politician.

Before his very eyes, the neta sees the commoner assume all those traits and characteristics which he possessed while he gets demoted to being pushed to a clerical position, where he inches up slowly in a year’s time. During this period, the commoner, now the Chief Minister goes from strength to strength and the original politician is now frustrated and desperate to come back to his original slot at any cost. He manages this by cunningly overpowering the commoner physically and assuming his original personality.

Once again the crowd returns and thrashes the original Chief Minister black and blue for being a terrible and corrupt administrator and rewards the commoner, who enjoys a second stroke of luck, the opposite effect of the politician who gets the rough end of the stick once more!

Liberally plucking anecdotes from day-to-day happenings and aptly placing it in the plot (like the LPG cylinder subsidy and allusions to the common man and his corruption-affected life), the play takes potshots at the authoritarian power structure of Delhi politics and the people who run it, blissfully oblivious to a myriad of problems.

A 100-strong audience thoroughly enjoyed the show on a windy evening.

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Friday, February 14, 2014

Love in the times of Telangana-Seemandhra

Sulogna Mehta,TNN | Feb 15, 2014, 04.10 AM IST

VISAKHAPATNAM: 'True love knows no reason, no boundaries, no distance. It has a sole intention of bringing people together to a time called forever.' So what if wily politicians are conspiring to play villains in the real life love stories of many couples hailing from the two regions of Seemandhra and Telangana with their bifurcation moves, the much-in-love couples in the city celebrated Valentine's Day leaving behind the division blues for the day.

Like the pyaar-kiya-toh-darna-kya attitude of final year engineering students R Geethika and D Sudhir who are going steady. While Geethika hails from Hyderabad but has been living in Vizag for the last few years due to her dad's posting, Sudhir is from the Port City. "Our parents don't know we are in a committed relationship though a few of our trusted friends and cousins are aware of it. After passing out of college, we will seek the blessings of our parents and nothing can stop us from getting married. We won't let bifurcation cast its shadow on our love as it is being carried out by politicians with vested interests. It's one language, one culture and above all, one country for us," said Sudhir, chilling out with Geethika on Beach Road.

Twenty-six-year-old Swapna Reddy from Hyderabad who got married to her 29-year-old sweetheart Kiran Kumar from Vizag, on V-Day last year. "I met Kiran when he came to Hyderabad on work. When so many inter-state, inter-culture, inter-religion, and even cross-country marriages are happening these days, who cares about Telangana and Seemandhra in the matters of the heart?" averred Swapna, currently pursuing her MBA.

Regional politics has no room in the lives of Karunakar Rao, 28, from Srikakulam and Vimala, 27, from Hyderabad who had a love marriage three years ago after years of online courtship. "We fell in love even without meeting each other. And finally jab we met, we decided to tie the knot despite objections from our families owing to our different backgrounds and castes. But we never bothered about such superficial differences. So why should we fight over Hyderabadi biryani, Telangana's garela pulusu or coastal Gongura mutton now?" quipped Karunakar, a private sector employee.

And while the families of yet-to-be-married couple V Saritha, hailing from the Port City, and Sunil from Hyderabad are a worried lot, the couple, which got engaged in December last year, are resolute. "There's no question of breaking our alliance just because of an illogical political decision. But our families are worried about fixing the wedding date, which was supposed to be sometime in the middle of this year. With elections coming up, the auspicious date now needs to be carefully selected as there's every possibility of agitations and strikes, both in Telangana and Seemandhra, over the bifurcation issue. Conducting a marriage in the midst of such chaos would be quite risky and we wonder if we would have to postpone the ceremonies till things settle down," pointed out Saritha.

However, there are some who are worried about the future of their children. Like private-sector employee T Ravi, who hails from Hyderabad. "My wife belongs to Prakasam district of coastal Andhra. We have been married for two decades and have lived in three different states but were never prepared for this kind of a disturbance in our own state. Though the bifurcation issue has not impacted our family relations in anyway because it's all a political move, we are worried about the higher education of our children as far as seats in medical and engineering colleges are concerned. The purchase of new property and its safety is also doubtful at the current juncture so we have to reconsider our investment plans carefully."

(Names of most couples have been changed on request)

Source: Times of India

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Saturday, February 08, 2014

శ్రీ కౌముది ఫిబ్రవరి 2014

Friday, February 07, 2014

5 Places Where People Slow Down Aging

Posted By Kaitlyn Wells on Feb 05, 2014

http://nautil.us/blog/5-places-where-people-slow-down-aging?utm_source=nextdraft&utm_medium=email
FIRAT SOLA via Flickr

Around the world, people are living longer, healthier lives than ever before. One area this is most visible is in the number of centenarians, or people living to the age of 100. In 1840, there were 90 centenarians in the United States—one for every 189,000 people—according to United States Census Bureau records. Today, there are more than 53,000—or one for every 5,800 people. Though we know people are living longer, we don’t necessarily how they do it.

After discovering that there are longevity hot spots where people tend to live especially long, writer Dan Buettner spent the last 12 years locating and documenting these areas, dubbed “blue zones.” “I increasingly was interested in mysteries that dealt with the human condition,” says Buettner, a National Geographic fellow.

Through that research, he found several factors that might prolong health and life for people in blue zones. “Longevity is a consequence of constant, longterm little things,” Buettner says. “There’s no silver bullet.” Buettner shared the findings in his books The Blue Zones (2009) and Thrive (2010); here are some of the high points:

Ikaria, Greece: Enjoy a nap after tea
Residents of this Greek island are three times as likely to reach age 90 than people in the U.S. Living to nonagenarian status may be more likely when you get some bonus shut-eye.

Among Ikarian elders who regularly nap in the middle of the day (90 percent of them, according to a 2011 study in Cardiology Research and Practice), none of them exhibited symptoms of depression, while many of the non-nappers did. A broader study examining the sleeping behaviors of all Greeks found that those who cat-napped for at least 30 minutes had a 37 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease than those who didn’t.

Being under Sandman’s spell isn’t the only thing helping them live longer: They also regularly enjoy herbal tea. Traditional Greek teas include wild mint, which fights gingivitis and gastrointestinal disorders; rosemary for gout; and artemisia for blood circulation. Many local teas also contain mild diuretics that can treat hypertension. This may explain why Ikaria has half the rate of cardiovascular disease compared to the rest of the region.

Okinawa, Japan: Maintain positive relationships
Living to an average of 83 years old, Japan is the nation with the highest life expectancy in the world, reports the World Health Organization. Okinawans are especially long-lived, and are three times as likely to reach 100 as Americans. Buettner attributes that feat to close ties with social networks. “Having a grounding sense of purpose is something we see in all five Blue Zones,” he says.

Okinawans remain faithful to traditional Japanese culture, including an emphasis on maintaining lifelong friendships called moais, which provide emotional and social support. The moais are cultivated throughout adolescence, and the members become confidants for the rest of their lives.

Just the presence of moais can be a benefit, as it increases social interaction and support. Take for example, a study in Social Science & Medicine that examined the mental health of older adults in Japan. Those who weren’t married reported a higher positive well-being and less distress in their lives when they had social support. Simply put, the closer your friendships, the happier you’ll be.

Loma Linda, California: Eat your veggies
Sixty miles east of Los Angeles lies Loma Linda, where the proportion of people aged 85 or over is more than double that of the rest of California. Roughly four in 10 Loma Lindans are Seventh-day Adventists, whose adherents live longer than any other religious group in America, according to BlueZones.com. The Adventist faith endorses healthy living by discouraging smoking and alcohol consumption and encouraging exercise.

A recent study, funded in part by the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute, examined the eating habits of 73,000 Adventist from across the U.S. and Canada. The vegetarians in the group were 12 percent less likely to die of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and renal disorders combined compared to the non-vegetarians.

Another study found that female Adventist vegetarians live four years longer, and males live seven years longer, compared to other Californias. The study concluded that regular consumption of  nuts, fruit, cereal fiber, green salad, and polyunsaturated fatty acids (such as wild salmon, safflower oil, and peanut butter) was associated with reduced mortality rates.

Nicoya, Costa Rica: Drink some juice
In Nicoya a man at age 60 has twice the chance of reaching 90 as a man living in France, Japan, or the U.S. It may have something to do with their diet. Nicoyans typically eat their biggest meal in the morning and their smallest at night, which Buettner says helps them avoid overeating. “The Blue Zones eat a lot of food, but the key is their foods are calorically less dense,” Buettner adds. “It’s not that Americans are stuffing their face all the time, it’s that we’re eating a little too much every day—about 200 calories more than we should.”

Large quantities of tropical fruit, which are low in calories, are staples at meals in Nicoya. Oranges, sweet lemons, and a variety of banana are popular choices. Nicoyans also eat a couple of more distinctive fruits: maroñon, a red-orange fruit with more vitamin C than oranges, and the anona, a pear-like fruit rich in antioxidants. Some studies have shown an association between a reduced risk of cancer and diets that are high in foods that contain vitamin C, but lab tests studying use of vitamin C by itself have produced mixed results.

Sardinia, Italy: Take a walk
In addition to a large number of centenarians, Sardinia is also home to a remarkably high population of sheep considering its size. The Mediterranean island’s shepherd and farming community is loaded with centenarian men who, in their younger years, regularly walked up to five miles a day across rugged terrain to tend to their shepherding duties, according to Buettner’s site, BlueZones.com. Daily trips to the grocery store are also carried out on foot, and climbing the stairs in each multi-story home provides more exercise. 


Source: NAUTILUS

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Sunday, February 02, 2014

By K Shiva Shanker | ENS - HYDERABAD   Published: 02nd February 2014 07:55 AM

http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/hyderabad/Northeasterners-Find-the-City-Less-Discriminatory/2014/02/02/article2033526.ece
Kevin Panmei from Northeast who lives in Hyderabad | Express Photos

Natives of North-eastern states living in the city say that they face discrimination even here, however,  it is much less here when compared to other states.

Around 800 students and employees from Kuki community and approximately 300 from Nagaland stay in the city besides people from other North-eastern states.

A day after a student from Arunachal Pradesh was beaten up in Delhi which led to his death, Express spoke to the students from north-east, who are either pursuing studies or are working here.

“I stayed in Delhi, Bengaluru and Mumbai before coming to the city. We face discrimination everywhere and we are treated as foreigners in our country. Even here, people from North-east are discriminated against, they call us names, but fortunately it is far less compared to other states. People are warm and welcoming here. I hope the situation becomes better” said Francis O Haokip, president of Kuki Students’ Organisation, Hyderabad.

He added that when such incidents of discrimination or victimisation take place, speedy justice will bring them some comfort and confidence.

“In addition if people from other communities support us during such incidents, it will be of support to us,” Francis said. He said for cultural festivals or other programmes of the community which are organised in the city, they invite localites so that they get senitised to their culture.

“During our orientation program, we ask students who are new to the city to speak to people from other communities and not to alienate themselves from others,” added Francis.

Corroborating the opinion, a native of Meghalaya who works in the city said that an increasing number of students from North-east choose to shift to southern part of India. “Some people do go to Delhi, but it is because they do not have an option. If given a chance, they will shift to southern states like Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad,” he said.

However, he pointed out that women from the states are discriminated and physically abused in the interior parts of the city. “Auto drivers and youngsters misbehave with women from the north-east. Sometimes, it becomes very disgusting” he said.

“People come and ask me if I am from Malaysia or Indonesia, it might be because of my looks. But I don’t think I need to get upset over this,” said Kevin Panmei who lives in the city.

Speaking about her experience of staying in the city, Gabriela Chongloi, a student at English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU), Hyderabad, said, “Being a woman and having experienced Delhi for about a year, I find Hyderabad way better and safer. Here, I personally have never faced any serious ethnic discrimination apart from being looked at out of curiosity. But what irks me is when kids call me Chinese or Japanese. They should have been taught better”.


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