Chennai First a Celebration. Positive News, Facts & Achievements about Chennai, Tamilians and all the People of TamilNadu – here at Home and Overseas
  • scissors
    October 31st, 2013adminLeaders, Sports, World Opinion

    The next few weeks are testing times for chess wizard Viswanathan Anand. For, he is busy getting himself ready – both mentally and physically – for his World Championship match against World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen next month in Chennai.

    In between all the hype around the match, Vishy, as he is called, made it a point to spend time with his family for Navaratri, a festival he loves. He gets talking to us on his upcoming match, inspirations and more.

    (Viswanathan Anand is busy…)

    (Viswanathan Anand is busy…)

    How are you preparing yourself for the big clash against Carlsen?

    It’s been months of preparation – both in terms of chess, and physical work. Now, it’s the last mile. So, I’m just taking it easy and getting ready for the match.

    You were in Chennai recently for Golu celebrations. How did you spend your time?

    I enjoyed seeing Akhil (son) in his Indian attire at the golus. Navarathri is a beautiful time to be in Chennai. The daily visits, guests, healthy sundals and music… it’s all so beautiful. Importantly, Navaratri is a family effort – arranging the dolls and planning the scenic backdrops that go into it. This year has been hectic due to visits to other golus, but it was mainly about Akhil.

    You must miss Aruna and Akhil a lot when you’re away touring. How does Akhil react when you talk to him over the phone and when you’re back home, how do you bond with him?

    We like playing together; there are lots pillow fights at home! He has this book – Happy Hippo Angry Duck – that we love reading together. The trick is to pretend that we are reading it for the first time every time. His favourite pastime now is counting; so, we count anything these days. And, of course, there’s Tom and Jerry; while he cheers for Jerry, I support Tom. I love it when he wakes me up in the morning with my brush and says, “Brush teeth.”

    In your career, how have you handled pressure, during and before a match? What are some things you do to ensure that it doesn’t get to you?

    It’s very difficult to keep a checklist because always, the one thing you don’t want to think about will pop right into the head. I try to keep a cool face and for the rest, just rely on my game.

    How friendly are you with Carlsen?

    We are cordial with each other.

    In a previous interview, you mentioned that you rarely get time to watch movies, and that you last watched Rajinikanth’s Sivaji…

    Well, I watched Kahaani and liked it a lot. I hope to watch The Lunchbox soon. But I have been watching classic Rajini films like Billa, etc…

    Finally, would you consider this as the most important match of your career, and why?

    Each match I play is the most important one yet.

    source: / The Times of India / Home> Sports> More Sports / by Srinivasa Ramanujam , TNN / October 19th, 2013

  • scissors

    The IIFA Awards are a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Bollywood , including the actors and actresses who have seemingly attained a ‘god-like’ status among millions of fans. Some of the most popular actresses are: The peerless Aishwarya Rai , the much-decorated Sonakshi Sinha and rising star Sonam Kapoor. It might also be a good time, however, to celebrate a couple of other Indian women who are arguably doing even more for the greater good of the society.

    Born in Chennai, Tamil Nadu in 1955, Indra Krishnamurthy Nooyi is today the CEO of PepsiCo, and was rated by Fortune Magazine, each year between 2006 and 2010, as the most powerful business woman in the World. Serving as Pepsi’s CFO since 2001, Nooyi has garnered extensive accolades for her part in Pepsi’s dramatic rise in revenue and profit during the same period. She has been praised for her dynamic leadership, decisiveness and ability to rally her organization to a cause.

    That a little girl born and raised in Chennai has grown up to become the most powerful business woman in the world is a stirring testament to the power of her dreams, the foundation provided by her family, and the nation that shaped her. I like the story of Indra Nooyi, for it is a reminder – powerful, tangible and inspiring – of the enduring promise of the daughters of India.

    Just as little girls in India today may be inspired to play tennis because of Sania Mirza, or to become an astronaut because of Kalpana Chawla, they may also dream of reaching the top of the business world, because of Indra Nooyi.

    Growing up in Chennai, Nooyi developed in an environment that would lay the groundwork for her future success, though she probably busted through a few more glass ceilings than anyone thought she would. A Hindu, she attended a Catholic school. She played cricket, and even started her own rock band in high school. She was allowed to express herself, with numerous interests outside the classroom.

    The story of Indra Nooyi seems all the more poignant to me after reading recent articles detailing with the growing number of female fetuses being aborted in India. Easy access to ultrasound has become a tool for evil, and combined with the pressure to have a son, has resulted in a form of “gendercide”. The long term consequences to the country could be dire, as such a dramatic shortage of girls will inevitably lead to increasing social problems among a restless young male population. The tragedy is not that most little girls in India may not reach the same heights as Indra Nooyi, but rather, that so many will never even have the chance, their lives cruelly snuffed out simply because of their gender.

    The need for collective honesty and effort when it comes to women’s issues is one reason why I support an initiative that might be distasteful to many traditional Indians.

    Recently, a young Delhi based woman named Umang Sabarwal launched on Facebook a plan for ‘SlutWalk New Delhi’. The idea originated in my home city, Toronto. A local police officer said that women should avoid dressing like ‘sluts’ to prevent being raped, and in so doing paid homage to the great lie – perverse, self serving and chauvinistic – that how a woman dresses somehow excuses verbal and physical sexual harassment. The successful ‘SlutWalk’ in Toronto ended up spawning similar events in a number of other North American cities.

    Sabarwal, 19, says she is concerned about women’s safety in her home city, and about the shameless ‘eve teasing’ carried out with seeming impunity by men in public. Predictably, much of the feedback directed at Sabarwal and her initiative has been decidedly negative. But Sabarwal says she will press ahead. ‘SlutWalk New Delhi’ is scheduled for some time near the end of July. The great problems of a society – and all societies have them – are not solved, or lessened, or made less bearable, by a quiet resignation, or by the pretense that they don’t exist. Societies and countries become better, more just and more fulfilled when the problems are first acknowledged, and then tackled with diligence and forethought. Umang Sabarwal understands this, and has demonstrated a courage that belies her years.

    To reach the pinnacle of the business world. To insist on the right to walk the streets of Delhi dressed as one desires, without enduring verbal or physical harassment. Indra Nooyi and Umang Sabarwal, despite their significant differences, are both contributing to a brighter future for India’s daughters. Both, through example and action, are championing the complete emancipation of Indian women.

    Check out ‘SlutWalk New Delhi’ on Facebook, and offer your support. And the next time you have a glass of wine with friends or family, raise a toast to these remarkable Indian women, whose extraordinary examples make their country proud, and indeed, make our world a better place.

    source: / The Times of India / Home> Contributors> Indra Nooyi / by Jair Irwin / June 28th, 2013

  • scissors
    October 30th, 2013adminScience & Technologies
    The picture for representational purpose only.

    The picture for representational purpose only.

    Vellore :
    For Ambur General Hospital, this was the first time in 50 years that an orthopaedic surgery was performed on its premises on Wednesday. The hospital was earlier referring its orthopaedic surgery cases to the government hospital nearby as it had no anaesthetist.
    A surgeon and anaesthetist were appointed last month. Wedne­sday’s surgery involved inserting a plate on the wrist of a coolie, Sridhar, who had injured himself while rising from the ground.
    “This gives us the confidence to do more orthopaedic surgeries as we have plenty of resources available at the hospital,” said Dr Noor Syed, Chief Medical Officer.
    The absence of an anaesthetist until now had kept  the hospital’s infrastructure unused though the authorities had been attending on cases, such as hernia. With the appointment of Dr Suresh, an MBBS, D.Ortho, and Bharath, the anesthetist, the doctors were keen to  perform the operation on Sridhar which proved to be successful.
    Dr Syed is next keen that a gynaecologist be appointed at the hospital which would help women living in the neighbouring areas. The hospital does have a maternity ward that is being looked after by experienced doctors and nurses. However, critical cases are referred to the Thirupathur General Hospital or Vellore General Hospital.
    source: / Deccan Chronicle / Home> News> Current Affairs / DC / by N. Thyagarajan / June 21st, 2013
  • scissors
    October 30th, 2013adminUncategorized
    Ooty-based dentist, 49-year-old Tarun Chhabra, is an expert on Toda culture and is possibly one of the few outsiders who can speak their language fluently / Photo: M. Sathyamoorthy / The Hindu

    Ooty-based dentist, 49-year-old Tarun Chhabra, is an expert on Toda culture and is possibly one of the few outsiders who can speak their language fluently / Photo: M. Sathyamoorthy / The Hindu

    The year was 1990. A youth in his mid-20s was browsing through books at the Defence Services Staff College library in Wellington, when he chanced upon WHR Rivers’ The Todas. As the son of an Army officer who served in the Nilgiris for long and as a student of The Lawrence School, Lovedale, he was familiar with name Todas, but knew nothing more. The pictures and text in the book fascinated him. It spoke about the Toda rites of passage, their rituals and way of life. He got it reissued repeatedly till he was satisfied he had read it thoroughly.

    Today, Ooty-based dentist, 49-year-old Tarun Chhabra, is an expert on Toda culture and is possibly one of the few outsiders who can speak their language fluently.

    The transformation took time. Tarun read up some more and introduced himself to the Todas. To learn their language, he wrote down words in a notebook and memorised them. Many months later, his vocabulary stood at a mere 50 words. Then, he threw his notebook away. He learnt to speak. “There was a time when I spoke a language that was 95 per cent Tamil and five per cent Toda. Now, it’s nearly 100 per cent Toda,” he smiles.

    Tarun says his life has been enriched by the Todas. “Their culture and traditions are unique, and I feel privileged to have experienced them first-hand,” he says.



    One of the Todas’ main beliefs relates to the afterlife. When a clan member dies, a buffalo is sacrificed. It is believed the animal will accompany the soul to the after world, passing though 15 landmarks. “Once, Kwattawdr Kuttan, a clan leader, took me to Upper Bhavani to show me the landmarks. They actually existed. That brought alive the belief for me. It was an honour, considering he had not even taken his son to the place,” says Tarun. Incidentally, buffalo sacrifice is on the wane these days, with many settling for a symbolic sacrifice.

    Tarun has also joined in the community task of thatching the revered conical temple. He accompanied the tribesmen to the western slopes of the Nilgiri rainforest to collect rattan cane for the job.

    Today, the Toda way of life is at a crossroads with just about 1,400 traditional tribespeople left. The Toda Nalavaaazhvu Sangam, set up by Tarun in 1992, primarily works to preserve their culture and provide better healthcare. It has got munds electrified. It has rebuilt abandoned temples and migration hamlets where the pastoral tribesmen stay when they take their cattle grazing. When buffalos are killed by predators, the trust compensates the Todas with another buffalo so that livelihoods are not affected.

    Tarun is so much in tune with the tribe, there’s little trace of his former avatar. He’s turned vegetarian and there are no religious symbols at home. Toda motifs reign — photographs of the temple, paintings of Todas or samples of Toda embroidery. Suzana, his assistant at the clinic, laughs: “He does not watch television or use a cell phone. He still depends on the radio.”

    Tarun has also set up an NGO, Edhkwehlynawd Botanical Refuge Centre Trust (, to conserve the flora and fauna of the land and to re-establish native species and to study the fauna of the area. “The idea is to restore the local ecology to its original condition,” says Tarun, who is also a photographer.

    He has rich knowledge of local flora and fauna, thanks to the Todas. “A bulk of my basic botanical knowledge is from them. I first say the Toda name, the botanical name and then the local name!”


    The Todas live a life attuned to Nature, a fact that Tarun deeply admires. For instance, they know the South West monsoon is on its way out when the Mawrsh (Michelia nilagirica or Nilgiri champak) flowers bloom. “They even have a flower that I call the worry flower,” smiles Tarun. “They believe that if you pluck the arkil poof (Gentiana pedicellata) by its stem and hold it, and it closes, you are worried. What a lovely way to gauge happiness!”

    During one such botanical expedition with Kwattawdr Kuttan in Kudiakad Betta, Tarun sighted a white rhododendron. It has since been named after him: Rhododendron arboreum nilagiricum tarun.

    Tarun, who’s as comfortable in a puthukuli, the traditional Toda shawl, as he is in a dapper suit, says he feels blessed. Despite being an outsider, he got to experience the life of the Todas at such close quarters, and even shared their home, an honour bestowed upon few. But, that’s probably because they consider him one of them. He reciprocates.

    Treatment for Todas is always free at this dental clinic. One of his most memorable meetings was with Taihthilly Kuttan, who came to his clinic for a check-up. They spoke of the issues plaguing the tribe, when the elder said: “You will know our problem. After all, you are like a Toda. No, no, you ARE a Toda!”

    Now, Tarun lives close by the Kizhker mund (Miniki Mund) near Fernill, on the foothills of Cairn Hill. His house is called Kewlngod, the Toda name for Cairn Hill. Tarun’s garden teems with native shola species, a spot of wilderness in new-age Ooty. He wakes up every morning to the sight of the mund in the near distance. He’s outside, yet a part of them.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> Features> MetroPlus> Society / by Subha J Rao / Coimbatore – October 17th, 2013

  • scissors
    Collector Jayashree Muralidharan going through the books at Central Library in Tiruchi on Thursday. — PHOTO: M. MOORTHY / The Hindu

    Collector Jayashree Muralidharan going through the books at Central Library in Tiruchi on Thursday. — PHOTO: M. MOORTHY / The Hindu

    The books were handed over to Collector Jayashree Muralidharan by Managing Director of the Tiruchi District Central Cooperative Bank.

    Civil service and other competitive examination books estimated at Rs. 72,000 and Rs. 67,000 were donated by the District Welfare Committee and the District Central Cooperative Bank respectively to the District Central Library here on Thursday.

    The books were handed over to Collector Jayashree Muralidharan by Managing Director of the Tiruchi District Central Cooperative Bank. The event was organised for the benefit of book readers and members of the library.

    The library currently has an enviable number of 1,52,665 books and 33,360 members.

    An average of 750 people visit the library on a daily basis and 350 books are issued per day. Rs. 28,79,299 was spent for infrastructure and Rs. 6,84,375 for purchasing computers.

    The library has received donations of Rs. 1,000 each from 273 patrons and Rs. 3,000 each from nine major patrons.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> Cities> Tiruchirapalli / by Deepika Muralidharan / Tiruchi – October 18th, 2013

  • scissors
    District livestock farm in Hosur where the cricket ground was developed by Lt Col T. Murari.—DC

    District livestock farm in Hosur where the cricket ground was developed by Lt Col T. Murari. —DC


    Hosur is known for its salubrious climate and rapid industrial growth; but how many of us know that cricket in the southern part of India started from the cattle farm here, asked B. Venkatasami, 80, elaborating on the history of cricket in Hosur, 55 km from Krishnagiri on the Chennai-Bengaluru national highway.

    Venkatasami, former MLA of the Swatantra Party of Rajagopalachari – the first Indian to become governor general of India – added that “Cricket was first introduced here by Lt Col T. Murari following his appointment as superintendent of the livestock research centre formed in Hosur as army remount centre.”

    The octogenarian continued, “Murari, prior to his appointment at the Hosur cattle farm, served in the Second World War under king’s commission and later rose to the rank of a major.”
    He has several firsts to his credit like the first Indian to become officer for the veterinary department and the first Indian to become member of the Marylebone Cricket Club and Madras cricket club during British rule.

    Venkatasami recalled the history as narrated to him by his father late M. Beere Gowda. “The lieutenant colonel, while studying veterinary science in Oxford University, was approached by Hilson, director of agriculture department, asking him to join the department as officer.”

    Following his consent, the British appointed Murari as superintendent of the livestock research station in Hosur, the first Indian to become officer of the veterinary department following the formation of Madras Veterinary College.

    Murari, while in Hosur, formed a cricket team by training people who did menial jobs in the cattle farm. The team regularly played matches against teams in Bengaluru and Mysore.

    He was also the first Indian to become member of the prestigious United Services Club in Bengaluru and was a founder-member of the Karnataka state cricket association, formerly known as Mysore cricket association.

    Venkatasami was concerned about the status of the historical cricket ground formed by Murari. “A ground with a small visitors gallery to watch the game was there for some time after Independence, but the historical monument was removed for development works,” he rued.

    source: / Deccan Chronicle / Home> News> Current Affairs / DC / by Sanjeevi Anandan / October 21st, 2013

  • scissors
    INVIGORATING EXERCISE: Yoga session under way at Gandhi Memorial Museum./ Photos: G. Moorthy / The Hindu

    INVIGORATING EXERCISE: Yoga session under way at Gandhi Memorial Museum./ Photos: G. Moorthy / The Hindu

    True to the Gandhian ideology of empowering women, Gandhi Memorial Museum offers vocational training programmes

    Thamilmozhi Jeyaseelan, a former software engineer, is a busy entrepreneur today. The success story of Mrs. Jeyaseelan, the mother of a four-year-old-girl, is awe-inspiring.

    She had enrolled her child in a personality development course conducted by the education wing of the Gandhi Memorial Museum in April. To while away her time, she joined the self-employment course organised by the museum and underwent training in the manufacture of 15 household items such as floor cleaners, ink, ‘oma’ water, phenyl, washing and dish-wash powders. “The seven-hour training was a turning point in my life. It gave me the confidence to leave my job as a software engineer in a private hospital and start a business venture. Today, I am able to spend more time with my family and provide employment to six poor women,” Mrs. Jeyaseelan says. She is manufacturing and marketing phenyl, dish-wash powders and ‘oma’ water. “The ‘oma’ water has become an instant hit in the market. The profits are good and I am glad to provide employment and empower womenfolk,” she adds.

    True to the Gandhian ideology of empowering women, the Gandhi Memorial Museum offers a slew of vocational training programmes, besides offering summer classes for school students, yoga and spoken Hindi classes throughout the year.

    The museum, housed on the premises of the historic summer palace of Rani Mangammal, is one of the major tourist attractions in Madurai. As per its 2011-2012 annual report, the museum attracted more number of visitors than the National Gandhi Museum in Delhi. From the 2013 fiscal, the museum had drawn 1,94,846 visitors, of which 14,135 were foreign tourists. The museum has not restricted itself to just enthral the visitors, but has been indulging in activities that are fruitful to many. With an extensive library, a research and publication section, an Institute of Gandhian Studies and Research (IGSR) and an education section, there is no dearth of activities in the museum.

    The library draws an average of 85 readers every day and has nearly 300 registered members, according to records available in the museum.

    The IGSR is probably one of the few places in the country which offers courses on Gandhian Thought. “We offer free courses such as Certificate in Gandhian Thought, Diploma in Gandhian Thought, Diploma in Inter-Religious Dialogue and PG Diploma in Peace and Value Education. The courses are affiliated to Madurai Kamaraj University. Students from Gandhigram Rural Institute and Madurai Kamaraj University undertake research works here,” says S. Jayaraj, research officer at the museum.

    Several volumes of books on Gandhian Thought have been translated in the research and publication section, which also documents newspaper reports that resonate Gandhian ideologies such as non-violence and peace, he adds.

    According to Mr. Jayaraj, while handing over Rani Mangammal Palace for the establishment of the museum, the State had envisioned a centre where research would flourish. The research centre was established in 1997 and became an approved institute of Madurai Kamaraj University in 2003 and has been disseminating Gandhian Thought and related subjects to the public, he adds.


    But for the summer courses, the others offered by the museum such as spoken Hindi class do not specify any age limit. “We have been conducting various certificate courses, especially for women, for the past five years. Mostly women attend the tailoring, jewellery-making and household item manufacturing courses and quite a few of them are successful in their business ventures,” says R. Natarajan, education officer of the museum. The education wing also conducts value education courses in schools and colleges to spread the Gandhian values of life.

    D. Sridharan, a retired pharmaceutical executive, who is taking the two-month Spoken Hindi lessons in the museum, says spending time learning in the serene atmosphere of the museum is a bliss. “Unlike other centres, the Gandhi Museum charges a nominal fee and teaches us even the fundamentals of the origin of the word. The museum is one of the best places in Madurai and could be spruced up,” Mr. Sridharan says.


    With the assistance from the State and the Centre, renovation work is under way at the museum. According to M.P. Gurusamy, museum secretary, an organic food canteen will be inaugurated in January. “We are planning to convert the open-air auditorium into an indoor facility. A museum and a park for the children will be constructed,” he says.

    The open-air auditorium is given on nominal rent for purposes other than political, communal and religious-oriented events, he says. “The resource persons, who provide training in skill development programmes, are those who are interested in Gandhian ideology. The museum does not pay them and they are volunteers. They only demand a nominal fee of less than Rs. 200 from the participants to meet the expenses of the core materials,” Mr. Gurusamy adds.

    According to K.R. Nanda Rao, curator of the museum, the main gallery will soon be refurbished with good lighting.

    The yoga training centre, approved by the Tamil Nadu Physical Education and Sports University Centre, has been functioning since 1998. “As of now, those who take part in training come on the advice of the doctors. Yoga should become a lifestyle habit,” says K. P. Gangadharan, yoga coordinator in the museum. People between the age group of 35 and 70 undergo yoga training and at least 100 students enrol for the certificate programmes in yoga every year, he says.

    For people such as M. Soundararajan, a retired BSNL employee, who grew up in Madurai, the museum needs better care. “The museum needs more staff to clean the premises. When I was in school, I remember the area behind the palace having beautiful plants. Now, we have trees and more saplings could be planted. A new toilet should be constructed,” concludes Mr. Soundararajan who is now a student of Spoken Hindi.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> Cities> Madurai / by M. Vandhana / Madurai – October 21st, 2013

  • scissors
    October 29th, 2013adminRecords, All, Sports, World Opinion
    BONN, GERMANY - OCTOBER 17:  Indian chess world champion Viswanathan Anand concentrates during his match against the Russian chess grandmaster Vladimir Kramnik  on October 17, 2008 in Bonn, Germany.  (Photo by Patrik Stollarz/Getty Images)

    BONN, GERMANY – OCTOBER 17: Indian chess world champion Viswanathan Anand concentrates during his match against the Russian chess grandmaster Vladimir Kramnik on October 17, 2008 in Bonn, Germany. (Photo by Patrik Stollarz/Getty Images)

    Even as one great man’s epic is about to draw to a weary ending, another man is preparing vigorously to sheath his story with one more epochal battle. Somewhere inside an elegantly dressed home in Chennai, Viswanathan Anand  might be laughing in irony at the brouhaha that surrounds the departure of  Sachin Tendulkar . The self-effacing genius enjoys living in the shade, long used to the skewed ways of the large masses of this nation.

    As ironic as it might be, the World Championship of Chess, being held in India for only the second time ever is faced with the daunting task of competing with the farewell party of India’s foremost sporting icon. Not that Anand will be too fazed.

    The modest man from Chennai has built a monumental career around his ability to navigate expertly around a complex maze of 64 squares. Matters of perception and market dynamics have rarely, if at all, bothered him or affected his love and hunger for mastering his craft.

    Chess struggles for attention as it is and the hyperbole around the little maestro’s departure is only going to make matters worse. Anand might even afford a rueful smile in a private conversation with his confidant and spouse.

    But under the glare of lights, he can be expected to deal with it in the most dignified manner possible. Their careers have run almost parallel and both men have shown exemplary character to enjoy an almost blemish-free run under intense public glare.

    The similarities end right there though. An insanely cricket mad India cheered every run from the blade of the great cricketer. However, Anand had to satisfy himself with only fleeting acknowledgement every time he won a World Championship.

    Breaking new ground is a refined habit with both these gentlemen. Sachin has collected more centuries and runs than was ever imagined possible. Anand, the country’s first chess grandmaster, usurped power from the customary champions of the Soviet bloc.

    Sachin has been first among equals because his zeal for accumulation was unmatched. Anand was the first man from a famished third world country to usher in a new era, by winning the FIDE World Championships in 2000.

    It was a victory that broadened the appeal of chess in Asia and expanded its market beyond the conventional hunting grounds around Europe. In a country abundant with patience even under duress, the success of chess isn’t entirely an anomaly. But it took the genius of Anand to pave the path for others to follow.

    Thousands of other players have paraded their talent, but not one player has come close to emulating the greatest chess player India has ever known. He has been feted by the government – the Rajiv Khel Ratna and the Padma Vibhushan sit proudly in his overflowing cabinet of honours.

    Ironically though, the unparalleled success of Anand is still not enough to excite nearly as much attention as anything to do with cricket might. Sample this – in 2010, a bevy of leading sportspersons donated their prized possessions to The Foundation, a charity run by actor Rahul Bose. A bat with which Sachin scored an obscure one-day international century in New Zealand fetched a whopping 42 lakhs. Even the racket with which Leander Paes  won the 2010 Wimbledon mixed doubles title managed to get a bid for 7 lakh. In stark contrast, the 2008 World Championship medal of Anand managed a number that wasn’t worth a mention in the media around the time.

    Anand has learnt well enough that his is a pursuit in solitude, only occasionally acknowledged even by his ardent fans. As polite and polished as Anand might be to his fans, he is a chess player driven by the quest for a place in the history of the game. It is this focus on his goals that lead Anand and his wife Aruna to find home in Spain.

    The relocation helped Anand avoid even the limited attention in India and allowed him to pursue his ambition without the distractions that surrounded his time in India. The reigning champion has since moved back to India and was all set to celebrate a grand event of unmatched scale on his home soil. As fate would have it, Sachin’s plans intervened with the harvest plans of chess.

    Anand is the only chess player to have won the World Chess Championships in all three formats – knock-out (2000), tournament (2007) and classical (2008 – current). While people close to the game of chess might rue the likely travesty in November, Vishy may be secretly enjoying the fact that all the attention will be on Sachin.

    Even at his tender age of 22,  Magnus Carlsen  is a once in a generation talent in the opinion of experts as well as his opponents. Anand will need his sharpest skills to overcome the challenge from the charismatic Norwegian, who is nearly half the champion’s age. It might help ease the pressure on Anand just a tad that the event itself might escape the intense glare of the media.

    Anand may have sincerely hoped for a big boost for the game of chess in India, riding on the back of an exuberant campaign ahead of the World Championships. But considering the enormity of the occasion, the world No. 7 will be happy to hunt his young opponent down in a quiet room inside the Hyatt Regency in Chennai between the 9th and 28th of November.

    source: / SportsKeeda / Home> Chess – World Chess Championship 2013 / by Anand Datla, Tennis Expert (Featured Writer) / October 21st, 2013

  • scissors

    Chennai :

    As the nation celebrates the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, his faithful stenographer who took the speeches of the celebrated monk to the world, remains unhonoured and unsung.

    Josiah Goodwin, an Englishman, followed Swami Vivekananada  from London and documented his speeches in UK, Sri Lanka and India before he died in 1898 in Ooty following illness. He was buried near a church in Ooty.

    “In his death I have lost a friend as true as steel, a disciple of never-failing devotion,” said Swami Vivekananda from Almora (UP) on receiving word about Goodwin’s demise.

    Born to an English couple at Yorkshire in 1870, Goodwin came in contact with Swami Vivekananda during his second visit to the United States in 1895. “Followers of Swami Vivekananda placed an advertisement for a stenographer and Goodwin, who had come to the US in search of job, was chosen. From then, Goodwin travelled with Swamiji recording his speeches,” said a senior monk at the Ramakrishna Mutt, Chennai.

    Vivekananda had such immense faith in Goodwin’s work that he started calling him ‘My faithful Goodwin’. “Though Goodwin was chosen to record Swamiji’s speeches for a salary, he refused to take money after a while,” said the monk. Goodwin travelled along with Vivekananda to the UK and India. “In 1897 when Swamiji reached Colombo, apart from the speeches delivered by him, Goodwin also recorded the reception given to the spiritual master at various places including the mammoth rally from Egmore to Vivekananda House in Madras,” said the monk.

    After accompanying Vivekananda through his tour to Almora, Goodwin was sent back to Madras by the Swamiji with a plan to start a newspaper in English with Goodwin as its editor. But the newspaper plan did not materialise and Goodwin was involved in bringing out an English monthly journal of the ‘Mutt’ called Brahmavadin, which is now called the Vedanta Kesari.

    “The Englishman could not withstand the heat of Madras and migrated to the cooler climes of Ooty but hardly took care of his health and finally died in 1898,” the monk narrated.

    On hearing about Goodwin’s death, Vivekananda wrote a small poem to his mother called ‘Requiescat in Pace’ (Rest in peace). This poem is inscribed in Goodwin’s grave at the cemetery at St Thomas Church, Ooty.

    source: / The Times of India / Home> City> Chennai> Swami Vivekananada / by B  SivaKumar, TNN / October 21st, 2013

  • scissors
    October 29th, 2013adminArts, Culture & Entertainment, Education

    City-based fusion music band e-Swara Project on Sunday secured its place in the finale of ‘Saarang’, the annual cultural festival of Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, scheduled in the first week of January.

    e-Swara Project, a progressive fusion rock group that started playing in February this year, competed against 11 other college bands in the city in the ‘Saarang Band Hunt’ competition held at Dayanand Sagar College of Engineering on Sunday. The band will now compete at a national stage in the light music finals at ‘Saarang’.

    “It means a lot to us to have qualified for a national event in the first place. It will be a great platform for us to showcase our talent and also learn,” said Dinushan Shanmuganathan, the band’s percussionist. The band recently released a single ‘Vande Mataram’ which garnered over 2 lakh views on YouTube.

    e-Swara Project comprises Yogeendra Hariprasad (vocals, keyboards), Anirban Sengupta (lead guitar), Dinushan (percussions), Raynol D’Souza (bass guitar), Nitesh Iyer (drums), V Noel Aiyar (keys) and Kantick Bannerjee and Aishwarya Rangarajan on vocals.

    Sunday’s event was IIT Madras’ first outreach programme in an attempt to ensure more participation, said Ravi Gondalia, final year aeronautical engineering student and head of IIM Madras’ publicity team. “We have had similar band hunts in Pune and Bhopal. Now, we head to Kochi and Hyderabad. Earlier, we invited entries through video links that was adjudged by experts. But our judges complained that it was not the right way to judge light music groups,” Ravi explained.

    source: / The New Indian Express / Home> Cities> Bangalore /  by Express News Service – Bangalore / October 21st, 2013

  • « Older Entries