Monday, December 31, 2012

Word-heavy delights As the year winds down, we bring you some of the page-turners that were much talked about

Word-heavy delights
As the year winds down, we bring you some of the page-turners that were much talked about
50 Shades series by E L James
The erotic novel series took the world by storm, and in India too, created waves as people scrambled to get their hands on this first-of-its-kind book on ‘mommy porn’. Allowing the Indian reader to explore a taboo subject, this trilogy has caused an urban revolution of sorts.

Shiva Trilogy by Amish Tripathi
In a plethora of mythological thrillers, this one stands out as well-written and even funny making for a great read. This year saw many flock to stores to get a copy of the first two books, and the final part, The Oath of the Vayuputras is expected out soon. Time will tell if if will create as much of a rage in 2013.

Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson
Post the death of the man who changed technology forever, the world mourned thinking the company would never be the same again. His biography which released on 2011, was a favourite buy for many who found a way to hold on to a piece of the genius behind the brand. A roller-coaster ride into the intense personality of this entrepreneur, the book is a must-have on your shelf!

Dongri to Dubai by S Hussain Zaidi
This book is an alleyway into Mumbai’s underworld — a topic that makes us tremble with fear and excitement all at once. The book is the inspiraton for the movie Shootout at Wadala. Known for his books that have spurred movies, the writer reveals his years of experience as a crime writer in this fast-paced chronicle of the mafia and Dawood Ibrahim.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

बलात्का-यांचे करायचे काय? कळवा!

राजधानी दिल्लीत चालत्या बसमध्ये तरुणीवर झालेल्या बलात्कारानंतर संपूर्ण देशात संतापाचा आगडोंब उसळला असून मोर्चे , आंदोलनांच्या माध्यमातून बलात्का - यांना कठोर शासन करण्याची मागणी होत आहे . बलात्काराच्या संदर्भातील कायद्याचा आढावा घेणा - या आयोगाने जनतेच्या या आक्रोशाची गंभीर दखल घेतली आहे . ' बलात्का - यांना काय शिक्षा करायची ' हे ठरविण्यासाठी आयोगाने थेट लोकांची मते मागविली आहेत .

लैंगिक अत्याचारातील पीडितांना लवकरात लवकर न्याय मिळावा आणि या प्रकरणातील आरोपींना कडक शिक्षा व्हावी , यासाठी कायद्यात आवश्यक बदल सुचवण्यासाठी सरकारने माजी मुख्य न्यायाधीश जे . एस . वर्मा यांच्या अध्यक्षतेखाली त्रिसदस्यीय आयोगाची स्थापना केली आहे . वर्मा आयोगाने आपल्या कामाला सुरुवात केली असून कायद्यात बदल करताना लोकांना सहभागी करून घेण्याचे ठरवले आहे . त्यासाठी आयोगाने एका प्रसिद्धीपत्रकाद्वारे लोकांना जानेवारीपर्यंत आपली मते कळविण्याचे आवाहन केले आहे . न्यायाधीश कायदेतज्ञांबरोबरच एनजीओ , महिला संघटना आणि सर्वसामान्य जनतेने आपले मत मांडावे , अशी विनंती न्या . वर्मा यांनी केली आहे . या सर्व सूचनांचा अभ्यास करून ३० दिवसांमध्ये आयोग सरकारला आपला अहवाल सादर करणार आहे .

मत कुठे कसे मांडाल ?

लैंगिक छळाविरोधातील कायद्यात काय बदल करावा याबद्दल मत मांडण्यासाठी या - मेल आयडीवर मेल पाठवता येईल किंवा ०११ - २३०९२६७५ या क्रमांकवर फॅक्स करून आपले मत आयोगापर्यंत पोहचविता येईल .

सध्याचा कायदा काय म्हणतो ?

सध्याच्या कायद्यानुसार बलात्काराच्या गुन्ह्यासाठी जास्तीत जास्त जन्मठेपेच्या शिक्षेची तरतूद आहे . मात्र , दिल्लीतील बलात्काराच्या घटनेनंतर देशभरातून बलात्का - यांना फाशीची शिक्षा दिली जावी अशी मागणी होत आहे . प्रमुख विरोधी पक्ष असलेल्या भाजपनेही बलात्काराच्या आरोपींना फाशी देण्याच्या शिक्षेचे समर्थन केले आहे . या पार्श्वभूमीवर वर्मा आयोग काय अहवाल देतो याकडे देशाचे लक्ष लागले आहे .

Citizens shun ‘depressing’ Twitter, FB
An overload of information on Delhi gang rape has forced them to get into a shell

The gruesome gang rape in Delhi and the outpour of anger not only on TV channels but also in social networking sites have led to depression among many.
The continuous coverage of the intensifying anger after the incident has left people depressed.
Singer Sunidhi Chauhan has stayed away from social networking sites, citing depression and helplessness.
On Friday, she tweeted: ‘sorry for not tweeting people. it's just that the whole vibe, the atmosphere is very disturbing and sad. Helpless.’
Many people hooked to social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook have off late echoed similar views. Many people are avoiding using the networking sites, saying there is too much of negativism and cynical statements and insensitive approach of the government which is depressing.
With new year round the corner, people have taken this opportunity to spend time with family and friends.
“It is a good thing that people are taking a break from social networking sites," said Dr Parul Tank, consultant psychiatrist, Fortis Mulund Hospital. "There is a overload of information on a site like Twitter. You are exposed to perceptions which is not your own and get influenced.”
Dr Tank added that many a times people lose their perspective and can get anxious. “The vulnerable people will definitely get affected with the Delhi incident and the outburst of perceptions related to it on social networking sites.”
Dr Harish Shetty, senior psychiatrist at LH Hiranandani Hospital, said: “People don’t want to face reality. They want infotainment. That’s the reason why many are going off social network sites temporarily and avoiding newspapers and news channels.”
Dr Shetty, who is seeing patients worried about their daughters' safety, said that reading too much on the rape case and the protests can aggravate stress levels. “It can lead to lack of sleep. I have advised many patients to stay away from news channels and newspaper.”

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

BSP to stick with ‘Brahmin’ experiment in state

BSP to stick with ‘Brahmin’ experiment in state
Pitching for a political opening in the state, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is planning to replicate its ‘social engineering’ experiments in the coming Lok Sabha polls by nominating more Brahmins and north Indians.
In the 2009 Lok Sabha elections had had nominated Brahmins from Pune, Thane, Mumbai South Central, Nashik, Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg and Parbhani.
The party, which secured 4.8% votes, had also put up north Indians for four of the six segments in Mumbai. The party had managed to secure over one lakh votes in three constituencies (Gadchiroli, Nagpur and Hingoli) while notching up significant gains in Pune, Ramtek, Yavatmal- Washim, Parbhani, Buldhana and Nanded.
BSP Maharashtra chief Vilas Garud told DNA that they were planning to put up Brahmin and north Indian candidates in the Lok Sabha polls.
“We will give representation to all communities according to their share in the population. If we include Brahmins apart from our core constituency of Dalits, OBCs will be automatically attracted to us (because of the presence of Brahmins),” said Garud and added that they would also put up candidates from the dominant Maratha community.
“The Dalits in Maharashtra are getting attracted to the BSP. The strategy to give more seats to Bramhins has also led to a rise in our vote share,” said Garud, adding that this helped attract votes of Brahmins, who felt left out of the mainstream political system. Garud said they had built up the party organisation up to the booth level and added that in the recent Nanded civic polls, the party had notched up around 9,500 votes, which was more than those polled by the Republican Party of India (RPI) factions.

Brahmins to set up women’s co-op, TV channel

Brahmins to set up women’s co-op, TV channel
This small community aims to build pressure in seven states
The Brahmin community in Maharashtra is planning to consolidate itself institutionally to flex its muscles socially and politically. There are plans to start a multi-state credit co-operative, women self-help group, a daily newspaper, news channel, a hospital and deemed university.
Pune-based Moreshwar Ghaisas Guruji, who heads the Bahubhashiya Brahmin Nyas, said they were planning to start a multi-state co-operative credit society with a presence in seven states namely Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Goa, Jharkhand and Assam.
In the absence of an updated caste census, Brahmins constitute about 3% of Maharashtra’s population, but Ghaisas said the number was around 7% to 8% if one considers Brahmins across linguistic groups.
“We need to come together and form a pressure group. We have no identity of our own and need to create it,” said Ghaisas. Ghaisas rued the fact that many communities, except Brahmins, had a presence in educational institutions and co-operatives.

CR’s Parel fast train plan put on hold Punctuality of other locals at the station is the concern

CR’s Parel fast train plan put on hold
Punctuality of other locals at the station is the concern

Commuters travelling through Parel station may have no choice but to continue to endure the crushing crowds that the station sees.
Central Railway (CR) officials have decided to keep on hold any plans to get some fast trains to stop at Parel’s sparsely-used platform 2, stating that such a move would delay trains during the peak morning and evening hours by more than four minutes.
The station is among the fastest growing ones in CR’s suburban network, thanks to the massive office spaces being built in the areas around the station, but is slowly becoming a nightmare for urnabn commuters with police personnel and home guards having to be placed just to get the crowds to navigate through the foot-overbridge.
According to CR statistics, Parel sold 21.8 lakh tickets in 2011-12, higher than the 19.8 lakh tickets in 2008. This, officials say, is a trajectory that will place Parel among the bigger stations like Dadar – which sells around 1.24 crore tickets a year – and Kurla in a matter of few years.
Increasing the rush of commuters at Parel station is the fact that its sister station on the Western line – Elphinstone Road – has also been seeing a robust rise in passengers the past few years.
Elphinstone station showed an increase of 114.45% passengers carrying season tickets and 69.16% increase in the total number of passengers using the station between 2004 and 2012.
Speaking to DNA, CR divisional railway manager Mukesh Nigam said that getting fast trains to halt at Parel would hit punctuality of the trains and, in turn, inconvenience people during the evening and morning rush hours.
“We are planning a terminal there which we believe will solve all the problems of Parel station. But for the time being, we do not have any plans to get fast trains to stop at the second platform,” Nigam said.
The problem that commuters face is that the terminal plan – costing nearly Rs140 crores – would take a good part of a decade to come up.

BMC helping illegal slums come up? Dahisar residents allege the civic body is indifferent to constructions on a piece of land meant for a secondary school

BMC helping illegal slums come up?
Dahisar residents allege the civic body is indifferent to constructions on a piece of land meant for a secondary school
In what could be another scam involving the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) scheme, chawls have been constructed on a plot in Dahisar that is reserved for a secondary school by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), even with civic authorities being apprised of the same.
Although residents of the area drew attention to the illegal construction and also approached the civic authorities, the response they received was too restrained.
“We were trying to complain about the illegal construction since it started, but we really had to keep an eye out for when the land was literally taken over in our part of the society compound. Even as we were watching, the work was on. They never listened when we tried to stop them, so we complained to the R North ward office,” said Anil Kalekar, a member of Shree Chintamani Nagar Cooperative Housing Society Ltd.
Their complaints, which the ward office did not pay any serious heed to, were then brought to the notice of additional municipal commissioner (AMC), Manisha Mhaiskar.
Residents met the AMC personally and briefed her about the situation. But even after a fortnight since then, no action has been initiated by the BMC and the illegal constructions are standing tall. Occupants of the structures are also managing to forge documents to prove that they had been living there since before 1995.
Interestingly, no one knows who is behind the construction.
Labourers work day and night, but have no idea about the person behind the project. Local MNS corporator Pravin Darekar was also contacted for the help, but he did nothing to give the residents any respite.
When DNA correspondent visited the place at Ashokvan in Dahisar near Gurukul School, a man guarding the structure said he had no information about the owner.
Assistant Commissioner Dynandev Labdhe could not be contacted, but an official from the ward said that they were under pressure to not act upon the structures.
Chairman of the society Nandkumar Kulkarni said that the BMC did act on our complaints. “They did remove the encroachments from our part of the ground, but even when we complained, they did not act against the encroachments on the plot for the secondary school and the one on the other side on the vacant land adjacent to ours. The structures are illegal and civic authorities are well aware of it,” he said.
Residents are harrowed with the nature of the illegal residential units as the toilets built for them are connected to storm water drains because they have no access to a sewerage chamber.
Secretary of the society Vivek Bhat said that the discharge from the toilets directly do into the open storm water drains, which poses a serious health risk for people in the area. “We have shown the connections to BMC officials. They acknowledged the issue, but have not acted on yet,” he said.
Rajan Sawant, another active member of the society, said that the civic officials have not take into consideration the studying who will be studying in such conditions in the school originally meant for the plot. “They came, they saw and they left,” Sawant said.

Two Marathi television actors – Anand Abhyankar, 49, and Akshay Pendse, 33 – who were travelling by car from Pune to Mumbai, died in an accident on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway

2 Marathi TV actors, kid die on Expressway
Mumbai-Pune Expressway claimed three lives when a tempo coming from the opposite directon jumped the divider near Urse toll naka and collided with a Maruti Wagon R. Although a survey has identified the spot as an accident zone, no corrective measure has been taken yet

Two Marathi television actors – Anand Abhyankar, 49, and Akshay Pendse, 33 – who were travelling by car from Pune to Mumbai, died in an accident on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway around 11pm on Sunday. Pendse’s 2-year-old son Pratush, who was also in the car, also lost his life. Pendse’s wife, Deepti, and chauffeur, Suresh Patil, escaped with minor injuries.
The mishap took place about 40km from Pune, near the Urse toll plaza when an oncoming tempo jumped the divider and collided with the car (a WagonR), damaging its right side.
At Wakad, on the fringes of Pune city, Abhyankar, who was sitting beside the chauffeur, decided to get behind the wheel, swapping seats with the driver. Pendse was in the rear seat behind the driver.
“As a result, Abhyankar and Pendse sustained multiple injuries on the head besides other parts. The infant too was grievously injured,” said sub-inspector Pradip Suryawanshi of Kamshet police station which has jurisdiction over the mishap site.
By the time the police and the highway patrol squad reached the place, Abhaynkar, Pendse and Pratush were unconscious while Deepti and Patil were frantically calling for help from passing vehicles. “All of them were rushed to a private hospital where the infant and the two men died,” said Suryawanshi.
The bodies of the deceased were taken to the civic-run Yeshwantrao Chavan Memorial Hospital in Pimpri-Chinchwad for post-mortem examinations. The bodies were handed over to the relatives of the deceased on Monday morning.
Meanwhile, the tempo driver, who fled the spot, surrendered at the same police station on Monday morning. “The tempo driver, Shrirang Mele, 35, who hails from Osmanabad district, has been arrested for causing death by negligence,” said Suryawanshi.
On Monday morning, a crane towed away the mangled remains of the ill-fated car from the accident spot.
The two actors had finished a film shoot for an upcoming Marathi film in Pune, and were on their way to Mumbai for another shoot.
Abhyankar is survived by wife Anjali, daughter Sanika and son Neeraj. While the infant’s body was buried, those of Abhyankar and Pendse were cremated in Pune.

Urse stretch lacks proper dividers
Three deaths in Sunday’s accident near Urse toll naka has once again highlighted the dangers on the Pune-Mumbai Expressway. Although the spot has been identified as accident-prone, nothing has been done about it.
In 2009, the rail and road traffic committee of the Mahratta Chambers of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA) conducted a survey on the 29-km stretch of the expressway and presented their recommendations to the authorities.
The survey found problems on the expressway and the Urse toll naka was identified as one of the accident-prone spots.
Gahunje Bridge and Beur were also killer spots.
Chandmal Parmar, road safety expert, said the road dividers are faulty on the Urse stretch. “Although there is a toll naka near the spot, drivers do not to slow down and often end up jumping the divider, leading to accidents,” he said.
The absence of proper dividers too is a hurdle for drivers. “Short bushes should be planted on the dividers,” he said. Parmar said that with no proper vegetation on dividers, drivers get blinded by headlights of vehicles from the opposite lane.
Lane-cutting, rash driving, overstepping by heavy vehicles in other lanes add to the problem.
The MCCIA had also suggested stricter speed control.

Shocked driver recalls moments before collision
Suresh Patil, the 30-year-old driver of Anand Abhyankar’s new Wagon R car was shocked when their vehicle was hit from the right side by a tempo coming from the opposite direction in a fraction of a second on the Pune-Mumbai expressway.
Patil, a resident of Kandivli (Mumbai), where Abhyankar has his residence, was working with Anand as his driver for last six months. He said that they began the journey on Sunday morning for Pune and Anand drove the car till Panvel from Kandivli.
He said that he drove the car from Panvel to Khalapur on the expressway and then again, Abhyankar drove the car to the Agriculture College in Pune where he was shooting for Duniyadari.
Patil recalled that after the pack up, Anand made it a point to visit his parents’ residence at Dahanukar Colony as he wanted to show them, his new car. They reached Dahanukar Colony at 9 pm and after spending some time with his parents, they began the journey to Mumbai. Anand had asked Akshay Pendse and his family to come to Dahanukar Colony from where they left for Mumbai.
Patil said that after leaving Pune, Anand asked him to stop at a spot after which he started driving.
He recollected, “After crossing the first toll naka, we noticed a speeding tempo and before we could grasp anything, it hit our vehicle from the right side and both the doors on the right side, bore the brunt of the collision.’’
Patil then called up Anand’s wife Anjali, who called up Anand’s close friend Jayant Godbole. Godbole called an ambulance and informed others but it was too late.

Commuters ‘walk free’ at Churchgate

Commuters ‘walk free’ at Churchgate

Thousands of commuters using the sprawling Churchgate station are apparently relieved over the removal of the 18 Door-Frame Metal Detectors (DFMDs) kept at the various entrances of the station. Officials said the DFMDs were removed over the past couple of days.
The DFMDs, one of the most controversial aspects of the post-11/7 train blasts security measures, had to be removed as many of them had started malfunctioning owing to age, most of them being more than four years old.
According to officials, the various motormen strikes, when crowd movement is at its most chaotic at Churchgate station, had also damaged many of the DFMDs extensively.
While many of the commuters DNA spoke to welcomed the ‘clean and clear’ passages at Churchgate, Railway Protection Force (RPF) officials said they don’t plan to discontinue the machines for eternity.
“We agree that they have not been very effective, mainly because of the fact that DFMDs are meant for places which are accessed by a few hundreds, like malls or theatres, rather than a place like Churchgate which sees over a million people a day. But it is still too early to say if we can entirely do away with them,” said an RPF officer.
If at all the DFMDs are replaced in the next couple of months, they will be replaced with DFMDs that have closed circuit television cameras on them. “As manning a DFMD is not possible because of shortage of manpower, CCTVs on DFMDs would help us in case of any untoward incident in any part of the station,” the officer said.
DFMDs have been a contentious issue at both Western Railway and Central Railway, with officials at both places believing that they have been of no use whatsoever in securing railway stations.
“We don’t have enough DFMDs to ensure that every entrance is covered, and that makes them redundant. It only obstructs the flow of people at places like Churchgate and CST. It is better to use the funds available in buying sniffer dogs or closed circuit television cameras,” said an officer.

CBSE to review student counselling services Affiliated schools have been asked to fill up an online questionnaire by january 10

CBSE to review student counselling services
Affiliated schools have been asked to fill up an online questionnaire by january 10
Following the recent incidents of violence against girl students, city schools are reviewing their counselling process. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is conducting a mapping of guidance and counselling services in its affiliated schools across the country.
According to the latest circular issued on December 21 and uploaded on the board’s website, all schools have been asked to fill an online questionnaire about their counselling services by January 10.
The board’s affiliation by-laws also advise schools to appoint a full-time counsellor. In order to broad base and streamline counselling services, the board has designed the questionnaire to map the guidance and counselling service available in its affiliated schools with the purpose of gauging the need and scope of such services.
“During the growth process and schooling, the environment becomes relatively complex and the child faces a variety of social, interpersonal, physical and emotional problems, which need to be resolved. Regular guidance and counselling help the child in maximising his/her capacities and in self-actualisation,” states the circular.
CBSE is the first, and perhaps the only, board of education in the country which has been providing psychological counselling services to stakeholders since 1998. As of now, this service is being provided by principals and counsellors on a voluntary basis from affiliated schools across the world.
“The board has also enlisted media support in this outreach programme. Major national dailies participate and publish question-answer columns that deal with queries of various natures. The board also provides free tele-counselling and online counselling twice a year with the help of professionals,” said a senior board official.
But several schools still don’t even have full-time counsellors, say experts. Arundhati Chauhan, president of the PTA United Forum who has started a new woman’s helpline says, “The crimes that have happened in the past few days in the city could have been resolved by counselling. Unfortunately, not all schools and colleges have full-time counsellors. Youngsters today are suffering from a range of issues, such as stress and anger. We need to reach out to them before they take an extreme step.”

Published Date:  Dec 25, 2012

Infection spreads, stabbed girl critical

Infection spreads, stabbed girl critical
Sonal Shah, 21, (name changed), the third-year BMS student who was stabbed eight times by her classmate Nikhil Bankar, on Bandra's Chetna College premises on December 22, is battling for her life.
Doctors at Guru Nanak Hospital said she has developed sepsis and her condition has taken a turn for the worse. "The infection has spread in the blood. She is critical. On Monday, the doctors operated on her right leg. She is still on ventilator and her blood pressure is low," said a hospital source.
On December 22, the doctors conducted a five-hour surgery as her small intestine had two major cuts, which had led to heavy blood loss. Bankar, who later stabbed himself, died in the hospital on the same day.
Meanwhile, the Kherwadi police have recorded the statements of more than 20 witnesses, including college staff and friends. “We learned that the victim and Bankar were close friends, but since the last few months he was getting too intense,” said senior police inspector A Chavan. “The victim complained to her parents about Bankar, who then complained to the college authorities. A non-cognisable complaint was registered against Bankar in the Kherwadi police station.”

Demand for sex education in school curriculum gets louder Parent-teacher forum will meet cm to discuss issue

Demand for sex education in school curriculum gets louder
Parent-teacher forum will meet cm to discuss issue
Worried about the rise in number of child sex abuse cases in the state, the Parent Teacher Association United Forum has reiterated its demand to introduce sex education in school curriculum.
The forum, which comprises parents and teachers who work for student welfare, has placed the demand before the government, and will soon meet the chief minister to discuss the matter.
“Sex education is the need of the hour, and we need to introduce it in the school syllabus as most girls don’t know the difference between good touch and bad touch. This time, we are seeking opinion from psychiatrist and counsellors for this subject," said Arundhati Chavan, president of the PTAUF.
The forum had made a similar demand two years, but no action was taken.
“Earlier, when the government had prepared the syllabus on sex education, they took most of the content from western countries, which is not suitable for our society. This time, we will make the syllabus keeping in the mind that the matter has to be accepted in our society," said Chavan.
Women and child welfare department minister Varsha Gaikwad concurred that sex education is important in schools. "But it can be done in an informal way by holding a special discussion on the subject," she added.
“Unfortunately most people equate sex education to the act of intercourse, which is this is completely wrong. It actually enables children to understand and deal with basic life skills and gender issues. Through this subject, students will learn self-respect and respect for the opposite gender which is very important,” explained Dr Samir Dalwai, developmental paediatrician and consultant of child rights.

Women-only cabs in demand

Women-only cabs in demand
Purvi Kotak, an insurance company executive and a regular party-goer, would unhesitatingly return home in a black-and-yellow cab or an autorickshaw after a night out. The 30-year-old Powai resident does not see herself doing the same after the horrific gang rape of a 23-year-old medical student in Delhi last week.
She plans to hire a cab from an all-women taxi fleet to return home after bringing in the New Year at a party. “It’s not that I don’t trust men anymore. But I don’t want to take a chance as far as my safety is concerned. With women drivers, I can be at ease while returning home late,” said Kotak.
The incident in Delhi has instilled fear among citizens of Mumbai and increased the demand for cabs driven by women, especially during the ongoing festive season of Christmas and New Year.
Preeti Sharma Menon, founder and MD of Viira cabs, which cater only to women, agrees. “Since the Delhi gang rape, the calls to our call centres have increased to more than 400 compared to nearly half before the incident,” she told DNA. Sushiben Shah, founder of Priyadarshini cabs, an all-women cab service, says there has been a 35%-40% increase in demand. “The festive season has also contributed to the demand. Female callers demand safety during travel,” she said.
Apart from women driving these cabs, what makes passengers feel safe is that they have a GPS system, panic buttons, pepper spray and sticks. The women drivers are also trained for self-defence.

Let the booze flow: Bars will remain open till 5am State excise dept relaxes rule for Christmas and New Year’s Eve

Let the booze flow: Bars will remain open till 5am
State excise dept relaxes rule for Christmas and New Year’s Eve
You can drink and party a bit longer on Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
Unlike other years, wine and beer shops in the city will operate till 1am instead of 10.30pm. “The state government has taken a decision to relax in some respects the time period for liquor sale and liquor distribution outlets on December 24, 25, and 31,” Sanjay Mukherjee, state excise commissioner, said.
Permit rooms, clubs and beer bars will stay open till 5am instead of the usual 1.30am only on these days. Country liquor shops will remain open till 1am.
“We will also take stringent steps against illicit liquor sale,” he said. Apart from flying squads, the department has completed “border mapping” covering almost all roads at state borders. Department staff would be posted to prevent smuggling of liquor.
Mukherjee also called on people to take single-day permits from liquor outlets for consumption, transport, and possession of liquor. People hosting banquets must seek a “premises permit” by paying Rs8,500 for foreign liquor and Rs750 for wine. With tighter enforcement, the department expects the revenues to be more than Rs900 crore. Last December,the figure was Rs796 crore.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

BYE BYE 2012

BYE BYE 2012

IF you want to throw a memorable year-end bash,take a detour from the tried-and-tested New Years Eve themes.We get three experts to play party planners with quirky themes that best sum up 2012,the Doomsday year or as some say,the beginning of 4th dimension.Believe what you may,but before the clock strikes the midnight hour,make sure your guests revel in a way they wont forget in a hurry.Here are three thematic send-offs to 2012 you can take a cue from...

Speakeasy ala 1920s style

Moral police snooped on everything from our posts to how we raised our toasts.Restaurateur AD Singh has a novel concept.Why not celebrate even that He feels nothing beats the charm of partying like people did in the prohibition era of 1920s America.That allowed a lot of speakeasy' bars to mushroom across America and Europe.These bars were essentially members only places where entry was through a code or password,people were forever on the lookout for watchdogs,and would down their shutters at any instance of a raid.Singh suggests this to be a hot party theme for this season.His ideas of a perfect speakeasy bash ala 1920s style are:
Have your basement or a garage as the venue.This is the ideal venue that would exude the charm of a prohibited place.
The whole place needs to have a dark and dingy feel to it with replicas of the era,like black and white check flooring,red walls,just a few dim lights and architectural references of the time adorning the area.
Keep the entry separate from the main entrance.Only guests will know where to enter from.Give out a password or code to each guest to be disclosed at the time of entry.
The drinks menu is minimal at such parties.One gin,scotch or vodka option is sufficient.Have lots of cocktails made out of one or two drinks.Let guests drink in tea cups rather than glasses.
Men should be dressed in suits,suspenders and hats while flapper dresses for the ladies is the ideal dress code.
Jazz music is the way to go.

Great Depression gig

Job cuts,economic slowdown and a gloomy financial picture make a lot of us feel like the present-day avatar of the generation that survived The Great Depression in 1930s.Food and wine consultant Aishwarya Nair feels nothing will be better than hosting a Great Depression-themed party to sign off this year.Here are her suggestions to host one such social gathering perfectly:
Keep the bar and dcor simple with lit candles or dim bulbs.Nothing should attract too much attention.Do have some props that uplift everyones spirit.
Let the food be limited but a quality affair.Starters can double up as main course.Crab cakes,caviar and foie gras are good options.
Drinks would be bootlegged and mixed in the bathtub.Vodka soda sparklers can be served in champagne glasses to give one the illusion of drinking fine wine without actually drinking it.
Have an austere feel to the party.Keep it an invite only event.Just have napkins with initials as the invite.Only those having invites should be allowed to enter.
Let the dress code be dreamjob.So if you want to be a lawyer,come in a black suit.Women,hoping to land a doctors job,can opt for a white coat.This will be a perfect way to actually let loose in the official attire!
Treat your guests to some Blues music.

End-of-the-world Mayan bash

Mayan calendar has already stated Dec 21,2012 to be doomsday.After all the hoopla surrounding it,why not pay a tribute to the formulators of that calendar and end this year on a high by ushering in 2013 with a Mayan-themed bash Hotelier Keshav Suri suggests tips to groove and move like Mayans:
An Incan temple or Mayan scroll shaped invite will be ideal.Designs of the map of Mayan civilisation and other symbols of that society,like the eagle or the sun can also be looked at.
Create a Mayan jungle ambience with replicas of jungle trees and foliage.Hunter gear,sticks and bar shaped like a Mayan pyramid will perfectly set the tone.Let guests use torchlights to move around.
Stock tequila,beer and fresh juices.Serve them in typical Mayan inspired cups.Treat guests to popular Latin American drinks like licuados or fresh fruit smoothies.
Let it be a Mexican feast high on nachos,chips with salsa sauce,tacos,enchiladas,burritos and empanadas.
Women should dress up in long skirts,white shirts and corsets while men should go for same coloured shirts and trousers with collared waistcoats.Accessorise with straw hats,tropical headgear,Mayan tattoos and feathers.Get tees printed with I Survived The Mayan calendar that everyone can wear the moment the clock strikes 12.You can either have temple bells as the background score through the bash or songs like REMs Its the end of the world,Europes The final countdown,Skeeter Davis The end of the world or Britney Spears Till the world ends.Whatever theme you pick,heres wishing you all a Happy 2013.

Who is the real you The person you really are may be hidden within the layers you have built over the years

Who is the real you

The person you really are may be hidden within the layers you have built over the years

WHEN two Sundays ago this column (Ozone,Dec 9 Time Never Stands Still ) mentioned that neither changing circumstances nor people can affect your balance so long as your core as a human being remains the same,I was inundated with requests to write about ones core as a human being!
Simply put,your core is your real,essential self the authentic you,the person you are when you shed all pretences.Thats the easy part;what is more difficult is tearing down the perception you have of your real self! For,all of us come to adopt an image of ourselves that we believe in very early in life,and then live trapped in that image for the rest of our lives.In doing so,we forget to understand who we really are,what makes us tick and what is true happiness or the real purpose of our lives.
And so,a child who may have had to deal with difficult parents withdraws into himself and lives the rest of his life convinced he is an introvert;a girl who may have been complimented for little else than her looks,may start focusing on her looks to the exclusion of all else.Someone who is appreciated for their sense of humour,may start believing that is their calling card.If smartness benefitted you in early childhood,you start believing yourself to be clever.But how sure are you that this is the real you Most probably the person you really are is hidden within the layers you have built over the years.
Add to that the pressures of fitting into predetermined slots and measuring up to expectations of punishing fitness routines,cosmetic surgery,and makeovers;of faking it to measure up,pushing yourself beyond limits,and doing things that you intrinsically dont agree with and your core self is too deeply hidden to even flutter in protest! Everyone wishes to be someone he or she isnt.Have you ever been in a situation where you feel like clawing the walls in frustration or getting out of your body,so to speak,and walking away At such times,you are obviously being forced to do something that runs contrary to your true self;something your very being rebels against!
Psychotherapist Stephen Cope,author of Yoga and the Quest for the True Self,says that people are aware of a sense of self-estrangement,and understand that they are not living lives according to their true authentic selves,their deepest possibilities in the world.The result is a sense of near-desperation. Healing this,he feels,would lead us to a new sense of purpose and to a deeper,more satisfying life.
Being true to your real self,psychiatrists tell us,induces psychological well-being as it leads to a feeling of higher self-esteem and satisfaction,and hence happiness.People who are true to themselves also have better coping skills and are mentally and physically,healthier.
But how can one discover ones core self Read on... Understand that to be the real you a certain amount of selfishness is necessary! Your focus has to shift to yourself.Who are you really And what do you want The first step is to understand yourself and know your priorities listen to your mind and body language.Know your strengths;more important,know your weaknesses.Have the confidence to be yourself and not copy anyone else.Make it a habit to look your best and feel good all the time.Nurture your mind with stimulating conversations,reads,and other challenging activities.What are the things that give you happiness Indulge in them.Often.When are you most uncomfortable and irritated Shun those activities.Focus on your most important relationships and dont waste time with negative souls.Dream big,and empower yourself to fulfil those dreams!

We adopt an image of ourselves early in life,and then live trapped in it for the rest of our lives

Its Your Life Best of O-zone by Vinita Dawra Nangia.Available at leading bookstores and call 8010058888/8010558888.for doorstep delivery

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Artist calligraphs Bible in Marathi

Artist calligraphs Bible in Marathi

Pune: Her passion for calligraphy made her put religious scriptures like Dnyaneshwari and Tukaram Gatha in stylised fonts.Swati Pethkar,an art and music teacher at a city school,completed the calligraphed version of the Bible,the New Testament in Marathi.On Christmas Eve,Pethkar wrote the last few lines in the presence of Father Francis Kharjia,the parish of Sacred Heart Church in Yerawada.The atmosphere at home always pushed me towards spirituality.I have always turned to spirituality for answers to my personal problems, she said.Swati would put in almost 16 hours a day into calligraphing the work with a boru,a writing instrument in reed.She even created her own calligraphy font called lakhva.

Playing their weddings Marathi calligraphy cards right

Playing their cards right

Gone are the days when wedding cards used boring, formal and mundane language. Couples these days are experimenting with ideas for wedding cards that reflect their individuality. Adman Sumanto Chattopadhyay believes that caste and creed have taken a backseat today.
“The marriage scenario has evolved considerably and love has taken precedence over all the other formalities,” he says.One of Sumanto’s colleagues, who got married recently, sent a wedding invitation to everybody on beer bottles.
“The message on the bottle read: ‘Marriages may have ended because of alcohol. But in our case, two people have come together because of this liquid.’ Invitation details were given on the label’s backside. Another friend of Sumanto had her wedding card printed on two magnets. “The idea was to exemplify attraction between two opposite people,” he remarks.
According to well-known calligraphy artist Achyut Palav, wedding cards today have become more like souvenirs. “The wedding card has developed a personality of its own. Couples want to create something which their friends would like to retain as a keepsake, rather than the traditional wedding card which usually goes into the trash can the very next day,” says Palav.
The artist had once created a wedding invitation for a couple which just had a single phrase, the date and the venue on it. The line read in Marathi: ‘Aarti Gajanana chi. Gajanana chi aarti.’ “When the invitation is meant for close friends, then why do you need all that elaborate information,” questions Palav.
Such cards also generated a lot of response from friends who you have never heard from since ages. Aarti Khatr, a branding and research professional, who just got married to the love of her life Chetan, has designed a wedding card that has the Zoozoo characters from the famous TV ad.
In another out-of-the-box invitation Sumit Rohatgi, marketing professional, designed an invite for brother Jayant and sister-in-law Ragani Parmar which looked like a DVD cover with a witty cartoon strip of the couple running on it. The DVD was titled ‘Imperfectly Perfect’ and had a paper cutting in the shape of a disc inside, which spelt out the wedding details.
Designer Aki Narula remembers the wedding card of his close friend Parul Khanna. “Wedding cards today reflect the fact that marriages are no longer just between families but between two individuals. This wedding card of my friend was unlike any other card I have seen before. It was entirely made of blood red silk fabric and had gold khadi printing on it. It was so simple and yet so stylish that it took me back to the Mughal era.”

Marathi calligraphy on tees-tshirts

The blue T-shirt on businessman Satish Singh looks like just any other ordinary causal wear. But there is something special about the T-shirt: it has words of famous Marathi poet Kusumagraj printed on it.
“I am impressed with the calligraphy, colours and the wordings on the T-shirt. These are lines from a famous poem. This T-shirt connects me in some way to Maharashtra and I feel proud,” said Singh, a non-Maharashtrian.
According to the businessman who deals in chemicals, promoting the local flavour through T-shirts is an interesting idea.
“There is a demand for these T-shirts in Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. My friends have liked them so much that I have personally sent many Marathi T-shirts to UP, Gujarat and Delhi. In fact, the people now want to make T-shirts in Tamil and Malayalam calligraphy,” Singh added.
The concept of Marathi T-shirts was propounded by Unmesh Joshi, a member of the family that runs a garment business under the brand name, Bharatiya Vastrashilpa. Joshi, a lover of poetry, said: “I like Marathi poetry and I am happy I have been able to popularise it among the young people through these T-shirts. So, I requested Pallav sir [Achyut Pallav, renowned calligraphist] to design them for the T-shirts.”
Joshi said he has ensured that he gets the written permission from the poets or their relatives.
Irene Johny, who bought some of these T-shirts for her daughter, said: “The T-shirts look good, no doubt. The colours are nice and the fabric is of good quality. More importantly, the calligraphy is clear and legible. I bought them for my daughter. Her friends liked the T-shirts and now they also plan to buy them.”
Pallav, who designed the Hutatma memorial for T-shirts in which one can read the names of all 106 martyrs, says the words on people’s dress reflect their sentiments.
“I wanted the new generation to connect to the words, names of the martyrs and the meaning of the lines written by the poets,” Pallav said.
Jayesh Satra, in charge of distribution for the T-shirts says: “The designs are protected by the copyright act. We sell nearly 10,000 T-shirts every month. We have reached 15 districts and our four outlets are at Shivaji Park alone.”

right style of display of name plates or logos using wall lights

Doorways convey the first impression of the house and there are many themes to choose from.

Call it a transition between the indoors and the outdoors or simply an experience of moving from one space to the other,entrance doorways are the pausing points and are designed as an invitation to the welcome inside and a gesture of farewell while leaving.
Doorways not only reflect the style statement and the personality of the user but also convey a first impression keeping in mind the function of the user.
While the most common trend is to blend the entrance door design with the theme decor of the interiors of the house,other ways to recreate an interesting entrance is by supplementing an existing door with accessories around it.Altogether,one may choose not to be in sync with any theme in particular but simply select from various designs of arched to rectangular framed doors or a latticed doorway.
The traditional or the vernacular form of doors,ornately carved and with adornments are typical of the 'Jain' or the' Rajasthan Marwari' style (salvaged from old haveli's or houses) which are hand crafted in teak often with brass or metal studs and rings and used as stand-alone art pieces for entrance gateways of bungalows and luxury apartments contrasting to the interiors within.Whereas the 'Period' style exemplifying the 'European-Colonial' or 'Neo-Classic characteristics,are more formal in design with a definite proportion and composition,typically teak wood paneled doors,at times with lattice work in wood or iron with or without an architrave finished in polish or paint.The 'Mediterranean' represents rusticity in its style and this can be brought about by using sleeper wood with all its knotty nuances coupled with ironwork to create an interesting entrance with accents of bright coloured mosaic borders around the door frame to portray an informal look.
If 'Contemporary' is your style,then steel or glass cannot be subtracted,depending on the function.Whether its an office,apartment or a retail store one can conceptualise a doorway just apt for the purpose.While glass fronted doors in plain,frosted or etched are clearly preferred over wood for offices and retail stores so as to have a visual connection and a sense of openness to the whole space.On the other hand,an individualistic touch is about using a mixed medium of wood,metals,and different colours to create a collage or an art form to a doorway and its surrounds.
Opting for decorative wrought iron or cast iron grills or sash bars in panels of doors is a trend followed in most urban homes,for security and sort of a communication between the inside and the outside,with many preferring it as a supplementary door to the one immediate.
Also,one cannot ignore treating the lobby or its surrounds independently of the entrance door leading to an apartment or house.Rough cast stucco on walls or a random stone pattern could give a casual feel while wood paneling,a more finished and formal look. Accessorising it with the right style of display of name plates or logos using wall lights effectively above is an important factor while accents like wall hangings,paintings or a decorative framed mirror in the lobby can double up the space.Accompaniments like planters,terracotta,pottery and brass urns illuminated with up-lighters can turn a dull space into a dramatic and an inviting entrance,be it formal or otherwise.Handcrafted teak and brass makes for a stunning traditional design The 'European- Colonial' designs are more formal with a definite proportion and composition The 'Mediterranean' represents rusticity in its style Glass and steel goes well for 'Contemporary' style

The 700-year old,Shivaji-era Someshwar temple,on the bank of river Ramnadi in Pashan,is up for a massive revamp

Someshwar temple getting a facelift

The 700-year old,Shivaji-era Someshwar temple,on the bank of river Ramnadi in Pashan,is up for a massive revamp.Someshwar temple precinct and the garden,public square and riverfront of the Ram Nadi are also to undergo renovation.The village park is to be a complete Village Culture Outdoor Gallery,while the temple is to receive sensitive conservation measures to improve its heritage value.The square and riverfront will be upgraded to make them cleaner,environmentally more acceptable.
The Pune Municipal Corporation and Someshwar Mandir Trust have begun the work on upgrading and showcasing the sleepy village of Pashan,historically known as Peth Jijapur,as it was often visited by Jijabai,mother of Chhatrapati Shivaji.The Grade I listed heritage of the Someshwar temple precinct and the garden,public square and riverfront of the Ram Nadi will undergo sensitive and minimal changes.The public areas renovation is being funded by the PMC,while the temple trust is funding the revamp of the temple precincts.
MLA Vinayak Nimhan,chairman of the temple trust,said,The temple will be renovated according to architectural norms,and would look how it did during the old times.Rs 25 lakh have been hitherto spent from devotees funds on revamping the temple.
Nimhan said the trust has also applied to the state government for a teerth kshetra status for the temple,after which the funds for renovation will be obtained from the state.
This temple is one of the very few Shiva temples that have both a river front and a kund.Hence,it is very auspicious, said Nimhan.
Kimaya,the architect group,has been appointed to revamp the riverfront,temple and the park.Conservation architect from Kimaya,Kiran Kalamdani,said,The backside of the temple will have an open air amphitheatre for religious functions.A major part of the work will involve electrification of the temple structures.High-performance LED fixtures to focus on the apex of the temple domes,LED string lights to focus on the circular form of the temple shikhar and the arches,and LED up-lighters to centre on the carvings would be fixed to accentuate these features.
Signages such as name plates for spaces inside,general information for visitors in tempered steel with etchings and marble have also been planned.
A high-watt,single node LED fittings in the existing holes of the tower,to recreate traditional deepmala illumination during festivals,has also been planned, said Kalamdani.
The park next to the temple,which would be a complete Village Culture Outdoor Gallery,will have statues of Jijabai and Shivaji near the entrance gate.The park will have tableaux with sculptures of rural folk.It would also display the Bara Balutedars or 12 Balutedars,who were the village artisans supported by 18 alutedars and 21 pagadbandh or management professionals.The complexities of rural India that made life simple will be explained as a dialogue between a grandfather and his grandchildren.The inspiration for this village life display is the Kad Siddheshwar museum at Kanheri Mutt near Kolhapur, said Kalamdani,adding that Naresh Zhurmure,additional commissioner,PMC,had introduced the concept of the village park.
The river banks will be consolidated and the water flow will be increased.

She loses herself as she reflects over the hardy versatility of the fragile beauty of glass in all shapes,colours and sizes


She loses herself as she reflects over the hardy versatility of the fragile beauty of glass in all shapes,colours and sizes

Its elegant and sophisticated and often the last word in luxurious dcor.Inset on marble,its glitter is unparalleled,while glazed or coloured varieties of the substance hold pride of place in any home,office or church.Yes,were talking shimmering,attractive,brittle glass here.
Glass finds its way into ordinary middle class homes as a utilitarian object with thousands of uses in almost every phase of construction.Some of the commonest examples of the use of glass are glass washbasins,doors,windows,corner pieces,in showcases,as a topping for centre and dining tables,nameplates and even glass walls or partitions within the house.Explains a glass dealer,Plain glass comes in three colours i.e.white,brown and gray.White is usually cheaper and reflects more sunlight.Though it has been around for a long time,even today,white glass remains more in demand than any of the other colours.It is used for almost everything ranging from tabletops,washbasins,windows,etc.But,compared to white glass,other colours afford more privacy and are generally used for office cabins.Glass of gray or brown colour is more expensive,starting at Rs 25 per sq ft,depending on its thickness. Another dealer lists the names of different types of glasses: star glass,karakarachi,white diamond glass,barish,tulip,bajri glass,etc.Though most of this is Greek and Latin to us,it is imperative that one has a basic knowledge of the subject since that makes it easier to pick and choose the best option in keeping with ones requirements.The general price range for colourless glass starts between Rs 25 per sq ft and Rs 110 per sq ft.
Coloured or stained glass for doors and other decor at ive pieces,incl u d i n g frames for fancy mirrors,nameplates etc,costs around Rs 250 per sq ft.This type of glass is also known as Tuffin glass.Here,you have ample opportunity to exercise your creativity since the design on the glass is up to you to decide.A word of caution,though: If you plan to use glass for doors,insist on glass with a minimum thickness of 12 mm for security reasons.Says Ravi Sharma,who recently revamped his house by putting in glass partitions between his living room,bedroom and kitchen,I brought in glass walls as partitions between my drawing room and the kitchen to give a spacious look to the layout of the house.Glass always creates an illusion of space since the extra space seems to be a part of the living room too.The wall Ive got is made of glass bricks.It cost me around Rs 90 per square foot,though prices can go up to about Rs 200 per square foot.
Also,instead of going in for ceramic tiles,one can use glass tiles that are available in bright pastel colours.These tiles can also be teamed with ceramic tiles,which proves more economical.Besides,you can even go for innovative patterns achieved by combining the two.This concept can be applied in the living room,kitchen or the bathroom.However,do this only if you are willing to shell out large amounts for the tiling.To give an example,glass tiles of the 6 x 6 size cost around Rs.90 per square foot.Tally this with good quality ceramic tiles of the same size that cost around Rs.45 per square foot.
As for sanitary ware,glass washbasins start from Rs.1500 per bowl onwards.Here too,you can pick from literally hundreds of varieties like transparent glass basins,semi-transparent,shaded or frosted basins,stained and coloured basins,et al.
Apart from being used in large widows to create a rainbow of light in different colours, coloured stained glass can be used as a tube light cover in your false ceiling as well as to provide shaded floor lights.
Bipin Sheth,who has a fancy stained glass door in his living room,says,The door is set in a teakwood frame and theres a painting of this beautiful lady on the glass.To me,the beautiful painting symbolises peace and prosperity.Besides,the picture also lends a modern touch to the room. For Bipins son,The beautiful lady is like my mother who,being the only female here,always takes care and looks after everyone in the household.The glass painting represents her power over the house, he says.The glass door is a good indicator for market prices.Bipin had the door made about five years ago and paid around Rs 11,000 for it.
So then,done reflecting yet Just go out and take your pick!

Carmakers introduce nameplates with Chinese companies to tap growth from China’s expanding middle class

Global Automakers Unveil Affordable Local China Brands
Carmakers introduce nameplates with Chinese companies to tap growth from China’s expanding middle class

    Some of the new Chinese cars unveiled at this week’s Shanghai Auto Show are affordable for millions of buyers — a happy development for Beijing that might prove costly for the global automakers producing them. General Motors unveiled the 630 sedan, the first model from its new Baojun badge developed with Chinese joint venture partners. The four-door is based on an older GM car and will have a sticker price of 70,000 to 100,000 yuan ($10,700 to $15,300).

Honda Motor displayed the plain, compact four-door S1 at the auto show, the first from its new Everus line which went on sale this week. Nissan Motor showed off an unnamed car it plans to sell under the Venucia brand next year. These so-called “indigenous” brands will only be sold in China and their prices are aimed at a segment of the market that is already crowded with cars from lesser known Chinese brands. They’ll also be in competition with the foreign automakers’ existing entry-level models. Car makers say they are introducing the nameplates with their Chinese joint venture partners so they can tap growth from China’s expanding middle class. But industry watchers say it’s a new tactic by China’s government, which is unhappy with the failure of state-owned automakers to gain significant market share for Chinese brands since partnering with foreigners.

When global automakers first entered China a quarter century ago, they were required to operate in joint ventures that were aimed at helping local partners learn and grow. Foreign automakers were allowed to keep hold of their technology and other intellectual property in those original agreements. Both parties were happy to split fat profits, but the results have disappointed China’s communist leaders because international brands such as Honda, Buick and Volkswagen now dominate with 70% of the market.

Manufacturing Chinese models is the “new cost of market access” for global automakers, said Mike Dunne, whose consultancy, Dunne, specialises in Asia’s auto markets.

“Beijing’s not happy,” so authorities drew up a new set of rules that would require car makers to share their technology if they want to expand in China, said Dunne, who is writing a book on the history of General Motors in China.

Car makers won’t admit it’s happening because it would be “politically incorrect,” he said.

Nissan has released few details about the car it plans to sell under the Venucia brand with partner Dongfeng Motor, including the price. The company plans to open 100 dealerships next year to sell the car. Kimiyasu Nakamura, president of the Japanese automaker’s Dongfeng joint venture, acknowledged the possibility that the new car would “cannibalise” sales of Nissan’s entry-level Sunny. GM denied it was strong-armed into launching Baojun, saying it decided to create the brand four years ago to sell cars in China’s interior cities, where it sees great potential for growth.

“The Baojun 630 will address the growing demand across the country for affordable transportation,” said GM China President Kevin Wale. GM will make the Baojun, which translates as Treasure Horse, with joint venture partners Shanghai Automotive Industry and Wuling Automobile Cars bearing the Baojun badge will be produced at its factory in Guangxi in China’s southwest. PSA Peugeot Citroen CEO Philippe Varin said developing a third brand was “part of the deal” for its new joint venture with Chang’an Automobile Group, according to a report in the Financial Times in March.

Customised show

• THESE SO-CALLED “INDIGENOUS” BRANDS will only be sold in China and their prices are aimed at a segment of the market that is already crowded with cars from lesser known Chinese brands

• GM WILL MAKE THE BAOJUN , which translates as Treasure Horse, with joint venture partners Shanghai Automotive Industry and Wuling Automobile Cars bearing the Baojun badge

Add style to the entrance of your home with decorative nameplates


Add style to the entrance of your home with decorative nameplates.Cast your address, your name, or a welcome note in an attractive style in durable material.

Name plate design 1 
"Nameplates are a functional work of art that express your style and taste.They can be an artistic fusion of wood,metal and glass,that are deftly designed to add a touch of class and grandeur to your entrance,"avers Aankit Agarwal,Co-owner Agarwal Dealers and Manufacturers.Make A Style Statement According Architect and Designer R K Srivastava,"For providing information regarding one's name or address,nameplates are a requisite.Thus they serve the informative purpose and are normally fixed either on the front gate or front door of the house.

The popular shape in which nameplates come is re c t a n g l e.S o m e t i m e s the nameplates assume the shape of the names of the person."Thus bearing a nameplate is vital.It helps the people identify your house easily.In offices these nameplates are displayed on the doors for identifying the employees.Available in various designs,and definitely help in creating a good first impression.

They are not only functional but are an attractive dcor item as well.Multiple Material Options: Since the late 19th century, marble has been a popular choice for nameplates. Marble is a metamorphic stone formed.

The stone takes on various appearances depending on the absence or presence of other materials in the formation.

Darker marble contains more sediment and tends to be softer than lighter shades,which are generally more durable and better able to withstand the ravages of time so it is quite popular as the nameplate material.

Among the materials used for creation of nameplates,some of the popular choices are,brass,aluminum,glass,bronze,plastic,wood and stainless steel.Creative combinations of two or more of these materials results in lovely designs.Creative Designs Informing about this facet Interior Designer Sanjeev Kapoor says,"The popular shape in which these nameplates are available is rectangular.If you are using wooden nameplates,you can display your name on it in the following ways - By painting your name in a contrast colour or by engraving your name on the plate.Sometimes on wooden plates,metallic name is embossed.Similarly in metallic name plates the names can be both painted and engraved."Fabulous Finishes Nameplates come in number of finishes."However the wooden and metallic nameplates are given f i n i s h i n g touches in a different manner.

The wooden nameplates are given finishing touch through painting,polishing and varnishing.While the metallic ones are available in wide range of finishes like brass,polished brass,lacquered brass,antique finish and many more,"Kapoor adds.Some Tips You will probably be presented with a book or a brochure showing you all the different fonts and designs that are available when you go to order the service.

It is very easy for a manufacturer to give you many different types of fonts or designs including things that are squiggly or swirly.Take care,though,to choose something,which is both,easy to read from a distance conveys the image that you want your house to convey and that is pleasing to the eye as well.Write down exactly what you want to have engraved and ensure that your handwriting is completely legible and all spelling is correct and that grammar in is checked for accuracy before sending it to the preparing unit.

Door Nameplates used to be the most ignored part while designing home interiors,but this trend is slowly changing.


Nameplates used to be the most ignored part while designing home interiors,but this trend is slowly changing.

You pay so much attention to the design of the home dcor and interiors but what about the nameplate A nameplate,after all,gives out the first impression of the home.Gone are the days when nameplates used to be just a piece of metal or wood with your name carved on it.With the advent of designer nameplates,people have galore options to select from which suits their taste and pocket as well.

Creatively designed nameplates become a striking feature and grasps the attention immediately.It mirrors the attitude and persona of the people staying in there.They also add elegance and a unique style to the house.
Says Naved Patel,Chief Architect,Evolution Architectural Design Studio,"Times have changed.People want to explore new trends and like to be different from the regular crowd.The nameplate industry has evolved a lot and is growing rapidly.From marbles and stones,the demand has shifted more towards glass and metals."
With materials available from glass,ceramics,and metals to marbles,one is definitely spoilt with options.You can also select from calligraphy which imparts an exquisite look to the entrance or choose from exotic stones for a premium look.

Commenting on this trend,Rattan Joneja, Director of Identiti - a designer nameplate brand says,"People have started naming their home rather than using their initials now a days.This trend is catching up fast.Naming the home also imparts a sense of family bonding."

Joneja further adds,"Another trend which is slowly catching up is the use of 'Hing-lish' language.Though English continues to predominantly rule the domain,there has often been a demand for 'Hing-lish' name plates too."

Says Patel,"Another option is eco-friendly nameplates.People want something different in almost everything they own.This has led to the concept of eco-friendly nameplates.There is a growing interest for such nameplates.These nameplates accentuate the overall look of the entrance.These designer nameplates costs anywhere between Rs.5,000 and go upto one lakh."

A few points to remember while selecting the name plate:

>> The nameplate should be kept simple yet stylish which will add elegance.>> Nameplate reflects the personality of the person.Ensure it adds an inviting feel to the entrance.>> Let the architect or interior designer decide the look of the nameplate.>> Designer nameplates start from Rs.750 and go up to as high as Rs.50,000.Decide what looks best for your house.>> If you are opting for home naming,research thoroughly and ensure the meaning.

The trend of customisation is seen in designing nameplates


The trend of customisation is seen in every aspect while designing the house,including nameplates.

While designing your house,you look into every possible minute detail but nameplate.The nameplate,after all,gives out the first impression of the home.Gone are the days when nameplates used to be
just a piece of metal or wood with your name carved on it.With the advent of designer nameplates,people have several options to select from to suit their taste and pocket as well.

Like any other interior section,nameplates,too,reflect the identity of people staying in there.Creatively designed nameplates become a striking feature and grasp the attention immediately.It mirrors the attitude and persona of the people and also adds elegance and a unique style to the house.

Says Naved Patel,Chief Architect,Evolution Architectural Design Studio,Times have changed.People want to explore new trends and like to be different from the regular crowd.The nameplate industry has evolved a lot and is growing rapidly.From marbles and stones,the demand has shifted more towards glass and metals.
One is spoilt with choices as there are various materials to opt from like glass,ceramics,metals and marbles.If you wish to impart an exquisite look,you can select from calligraphy or choose from exotic stones for a premium look.

Commenting on the trend,Rattan Joneja,Director,Identiti - a designer nameplate brand,says,"People have started naming their home rather than using their initials nowadays.This trend is catching up fast.Naming the home also imparts a sense of family bonding."Joneja adds,"Another trend which is slowly catching up is the use of 'Hing-lish' language.Though English continues to predominantly rule the domain,there has often been a demand for 'Hing-lish' name plates too."Avers Patel,"Another option is ecofriendly nameplates.People want something different in almost everything they own.This has led to the concept of eco-friendly nameplates.There is a growing interest for such nameplates.These nameplates accentuate the overall look of the entrance.These designer nameplates costs anywhere between Rs 5,000 and go up to one lakh.

A few points to remember while selecting the nameplate:

The nameplate should be kept simple yet stylish which will add elegance.Nameplate reflects the personality of the person.Ensure it adds an inviting feel to the entrance.Let the architect or interior designer decide the look of the nameplate.Designer nameplates start from Rs 750 and go up to as high as Rs 1 lakh.Decide what looks best for your house.If you are opting for home naming,research thoroughly and ensure the meaning.


Incorporate natural materials like jute,bamboo,organic cotton or hemp in your home dcor.Wicker is an affordable option for your furniture.You can also make furniture from natural branches and logs.Chairs made up of woven cane look attractive.Durable tabletops,candle holders and other decorative objects can be made using stone.Copper and other metals make for attractive lamps and wall decorations.They impart a classic look as well.Decorate photo frames using twigs and branches.You can also embellish them with small pebbles and dried leaves for an attractive look.Twigs can be woven into decorative wall hangings.You can also decorate your vases,baskets and bowls with pine cones,acorns and hand-painted pebbles.



Spending money on the expensive name plates

All in the name

The house owner finds pleasure in spending money on the expensive name plates that gives the first impression about the owner,says Prakash Bhandari

They say what is there in a name.But for those who own a house,the significance of naming the house at times is emotional and sensible as well.Those who believe in Vaastu often consult a Vaastu expert and only after a satisfying consultation the name appears on the house.You move around the colonies and you would come out with names written with bold letters like Kaustubh,Neelgagan,Ashiana,Manzil,Anand Niketan,Shanti Niketan,Govind Niwas,Megh Niwas,Nand Kunj,Emerald House,Green House and Rangoon House either on the house or on the exclusive house sign boards.

Many times people prefer to name the house on the name of their native place,villages or Thikanas they belong to.There was a time when the house sign or name plates on the houses were made of marble slab with black engraving.This was the oldest mode of naming a house.Many people used enamel name plates that would be weather proof and dust proof as well.In last few years a lot many changes have taken place.The owners of the house have shown distinct taste while choosing the house sign or name plates.The old tin plates,marble plates and wooden plates are being fast replaced with newer material and stones of various kinds and colours.The old marble name plates that lasts for ever is fast being replaced by plates made up of slate,granite,ceramic,glass,iron,bronze and other alloys.

The house owner finds pleasure in spending money on the house sign or name plates that gives the first impression about the owner and his house to a visitor.There are people who use lighting to display their house signs in the night,neatly placed on one side of the entrance gate pillar or on the gate itself.There are some who use the iron grill and wooden planks on the house gate to display the house sign or names of the owners.

The change of technology has also changed the name plates of not only residential buildings,but commercial buildings also.In several commercial buildings one can find engraved names on glass,granite,marble,cast and bronze,aluminium and florescent plates.People even browse internet and search for the latest technological development to use them while engraving the name plates.Be selective while choosing the signage and the fonts 

The name plates should have the house name,number and the name of the owner It should be placed at such a position where maximum visibility is ensured Those who use the night lamp could go fluorescent material that absorbs light in the day time and shines at night Sign boards which are imported mostly from Europe are available in Delhi and Mumbai One can use laser technology for preparing name plates of various fonts and sizes Avoid using a wooden name plate as after some years the woods wilts Instead of engraving "Beware of Dog",use a plate having picture of dog 

There is a saying that the exterior often shows the depth of your interiors that suggest you to select the name plates with a lot of care and of course taste.

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