rediff.com
Skip to content


Metropolitis







Metropolitis


Popular sociology is that branch of Sociology studied by any average citizen with commonsense who does not have any actual qualification in Academic sociology( own definition)


Metropolitis is a disorder seen in city dwelling people characertised by the following Symptoms Signs & comorbidities.1) Extreme Self-centerdness 2) Lack of Sensitivity 3) Self obsession 4) Morbid insecurity 5) High level of consumerism 6) Distancing from Reality 7) Lack of Faith 8) High Dependence on Gadgets(Cars,Mobile phones,TVs etc) 9) Sociopathic &/or Psychopathic Behaviour 10) Self destructive Competitiveness 11) Tendency to Hoard Resources 12) Indulgence 13) Morbid  Objectivity 14) Manupulativeness masquerading as manageabilty 15) Power Mongerism 16) Lifestyle Sicknessess 17) Environmental Maladjustment 18) Cricketomania 19) Academic syndrome


 


We are all suffering from this condition knowingly or unknowngly.


 


 


Posted in Popular Sociology.


Nasik Infra

Nasik Infra

Nasik Rising is a concept floated by Infrastructure organizations and Builder loby with capital interests in development of Nasik from a city to megacity.This lobby from time to time sponsors feature in press sounding and equating progress with with development whereas they are remotely connected with culture and environment. This loby with press lobby ropes in some enthusiasts from universities and departments like education and development who have very low sensitivities to ground realities about politics and anthropology especially population ,human migrations and it bad effects.

An article by Dr Satish Shrivastav from Savitribai Pune University made me sit up and take a count of these realities in Nasik per se. In the foreword the editor in Maharashtra Times himself talks of infrastructural issues like roads,electricity,potable water, air and noise pollutionand community concerns the article itself doesnot take cognizance of any of the issues and only promotes a blueprint of the development and day dreaming to attract investments into Nasik.

I intend to put on record the following issues which have appeared in press from time to time about Nasik .This city eing close to my heart ,I am putting down so that the true picture emerges in front of so called city planners and patrons.

1)Dada Sahbeb Phalke the doyen of Indian Cinema hailed from Nasik and the city and sourroundings have recently been sites of film shootings inspite of bollywood developing a weakness for foreign locales .A film and television institute is one of the rightful demands.But it it may be too far fetched as a central institute stands in Pune for last 5 decades.It is justified to duplicate the exercise. The institute that can be envisaged then is a state level institute which could be better then one at Pune in terms of nett area in acres.This green patch could be a green lung of Nasik .Nasik is replete with dramatic talent and this writer was witness to some exclusive experiments in Theatre at Balaji Mandeer in Nasik at Kapad Bazar during their annual gatherings.

There are excellent locales around Nasik where film shootings can be done and resorts built to promote this activity.They are Ghatandevi at Igatpuri, Kasara Ghat,Vihigaon,Ahurli, Vaitarna Dam, Talegaon in Tribakeshwar, Pahine Ghat,anjaneri, Deolali Camp and Kadva Dam. These sites are exotic in natural sceneray and form a perfect backdrop for a rural locale or for song recordings and many more.

2) Ready reconer rates in Nasik have gone up by 10 -12 %.and this is against the middle class so the city brings in capital investors who build large scale to give returns to bank . These institutions are least concerned in saturation points in urban transport ,pollution,traffic, and law and order issues such as corruption and political interference and interest.

With middle class routed in Nasik it becomes a hub for money spinners who drive so called developments without regards to existing infrastructure and the city can go bankcrupt. Detriot is honest to acknowledge this being a progressive city in USA when the 4 wheeler revolution took place depicted in Wheels by Arthur Hailey. Is the buiding lobby aware of Municipal finances in nasik ? They will do gross tax evasion by greasing palms of petty officers to change data and and documents to suit them.

Huge hillocks will then turn into stone quarries and one such mountain hs been eroded on Mumbai Nsik highway giving the mighty mountain a humbled ugly look at the detriment of the natural landscape and design. Many more hillocks around nasik will face such extinction inviting earthquakes in future.City planners and fathers have to look into this excavations which destroy roads due to truckloads of stone being carried beyond permitted weightage and the brunt being borne by roads inconveniencing all citizens.

Points

Digital world and social media:Free Wifi in Malegaon in sinnar Taluka for Rs55,000 ;range 100 sq meters,100 users,2 mpbs,15 days execution Malegaon and Maparwadi

Tourism ,Trekking : Trirasmi hill north front Pandav leni 24 caves ,8 km SW of Nasik. Vainateya Nasik Trekking and Mountaineering organization

Heritage: Mumbai Agra NH 4, Dwarka and Green View,Ramshez fort and Saptashringi

Logistics: Cargo station at Odha

Urban Transport : Nasik Pune Railway .Proposed route indexed to 2001 population Nasik Sinnar,Sangmner,Alepphata,Manchar,Rajgurunagar,Chakan,Begavwade ; 1900 crores ,265 kmsSuggested route by railway users organizations : Alternative route with less distance and expenses and indexed to 2011 population

Read my blog on River Godavari ; http://blogs.rediff.com/wordscape/2014/06/

Posted in Community Concerns, environment, Movies, Population and Demography, Urban Issues.


Ramachandra Sapre

Ramachandra Sapre

When I got engaged to Dr Anjali, I got acquainted with my father-in-law Shri R.B.Sapre. I only knew that he was an accomplished chess player and a chess columnist for I had seen his chess problems for years as they would appear in Blitz, Indian Express and Illustrated Weekly and maybe even tried to solve some of them. I had seen him on Ruia campus where he coached the initiated with his guru type zola popular amongst artists of yesteryears.

We did play Chess at our home with my parents and siblings and it was for fun. That was the golden era when we dabbled with card games, scrabble, carom and lido or snakes and ladder and of course ‘Nava Vyapar’ a game of money and business. There were no computer games then and physical culture was lacking in middle class homes where emphasis was on indoor games. After my marriage, I came to know about the world of competitive chess and its nuances although I knew about the great players like Bobby Fisher and

My respect for my F-I-L went up when I learnt that he was the first national champion and marveled at the fact that his career was totally different as compared to the run of the mill like doctors ,lawyers ,clerks and engineers . I however got to know more about this quirky individual when he shifted his residence to the same suburb where we stayed.He gave a lot of time to my son Devendra and that was his biggest gift to us.He would spend hours with his grandson keeping him company and inculcating values in him.We are grateful to him till this date.

I was thrilled at his seemingly carefree lifestyle although he put in a lot of hard work even when he was in his seventies writing about international games and posing challenging problems to the avid chess players and followers of the 64 house game across the nation. People knew him far and wide and every nook and corner of the country .He would burn the midnight oil to submit the problems for the column and took great pains to built quality into it. His old typewriter and withered chess board were at times improvised but together they churned out amazing problems and solutions. Shri Phadke a neighbor had got this Remington serviced on many occasions as he revered his ascetic lifestyle and principles without complaint.He was a pioneer in Chess Journalism and tremendously helped to make this game popular in pre computer and pre net era. He was felicitated for his contribution to Indian Chess on an occasion when Vishwanathan Anand was invited to witness the proceedings.Appa would himself appreciate Anands game and analyze them. He had predicted Anands’ rise on the chess horizon very early.He would feel proud for India everytime Anand won a championship .

Appa ,as he was addressed loved good things in life as he had seen it all in Europe during his chess tourneys and representations of the country where he rubbed shoulders with bigwigs and brought home stories of Great Players like Alekhine and ……….and other Grandmasters . I would love to hear when senior chess buffs met at times in the home for a weekend games and would analyze great games and tell anecdotes about chess celebrities. But they never gossiped as Chess players have their own etiquettes, style and code of conduct .The techniques like Sicilian defence ,…….,…….still hold me in awe as I appreciate the romance of the game of aggression,intelligence,strategy,patience and many other virtues . A thorough gentlemans game,the great Bollywood actor Rehman was an ardent lover of the game and knew Appa on personal terms.Appa had great contacts through his play and dedication ,but he never ever took any unfair advantage of the same.Bhau Padsalgikar a towering Chess man from Sangli was a friend and contemporary and on one occasion at a famed Sangli Chess tourney we had the opportunity to understand and witness their love and respect for each others. Appa had no fancy for clothes and popularity .He lived life on his terms happy in his thoughts and world. He never canvassed for any pension,gift or award .He was clean to the core.H supported his wife and handicapped daughter till the end with love and care.

Appa was clumsy and ill-kempt at times but it suited his personality and he never looked shabby. He was tall,fair , handsome and good looking with a wheatish complexion rare to find in a person of limited pecuniary status.He was clean shaven and had sharp features .He never had a penchant for money and material .He was simple, sagacious and succinct. He was a man of few words and listened carefully to others before he made any remark although he was sarcastic at times. He was a voracious reader and would distill off every meaningful story from the daily periodicals and knew about history and culture of India .He was a walking encyclopedia and had remarkable memory of dates and events. He had particular interest in the Indian Freedom Struggle and he remained a congressman till the end.Appa loved hot and sour foods and had weakness for curds and mangoes. He never consumed alcohol or never smoked but had very occasional beer for its volume, dilution and bitterness. He took tobacco for its anticonstipatory effects.

His language skills were astonishing and he would make every submission classy with his good English and phrases .His English vocabulary was amazing and he remained a student of good English till his end. An English dictionary was his constant companion and he never lost a chance to refer it .He did not dabble in arts and music as basically he was a man of science and had built in engineering genious.He would repair gadgets at home with dogged concentration and innovations. If he was seized of a problem he would go miles to understand it before solving it in his own way.

Appa was very good in Sanskrit and knew the verses of Bhavbhuti and Kalidas and the Mahabharata and Ramayana well although he was never religious .He would recite Sanskrit quotes perfectly with alacrity depending on the situation and on one occasion even proved that he was right when he corrected a close relative who had a masters in Sanskrit.She sobbed and was inconsolable when she was proved wrong as it hurt her ego.Appa held that wisdom came from language and grammar. It was this basic interest in Logic which made him into a Sanskrit scholar although he was not an exponent or pundit.Appa was equally comfortable with Marathi and never ever made a single spelling error .

Appa loved swimming and was a member of MGMO pool at Dadar.On way back he would drop at Pamart Studio for a cup of tea and short chat with my father .Later ,we went to Mulund swimming pool where he gave basic lessons in swimming to my son in floatation which according to him is first step in pool science. He would never exert much in the pool and would be seen floating supine for most of the time. I cherish those days of togetherness even today. When I had a brush with law Appa stood tall and argued out the homework with his stoicism and restrain. I had the good fortune to travel with him to Palaghat in Kerala where my son was taking part in national level junior chess tournament .We went to Gurvayoor and Maeenaxipuram and Managalore on return journey ,when I got more glimpses of his personality .I could then understand the love and respect that Amir Khoja the Secretary of AICF showered on Appa holding him as mentor to Indian Chess. Appa was timid and shy but always followed the rules .He would never cow down especially in crisis and would talk of killer instinct essential in the game .Appa never understood cricket ,cinema and advert sand he never cared .

If there was a message he would love give to entire clan it would be : In this big never-ending world ,always follow the rule .Never give up .Follow the head over heart yet do whatever you do with passion.

In the later life Appa developed cardiac myopathy and dysarrythmia and he took drugs for years and during one of the episodes during admission in an ICU picked up a bad Nosocomial lung Infection . During the last hours ,surprisingly his heart remained steadfast till the end.

My wife Dr Anjali and my son Devendra have inherited many traits from Appa and although they are at times bothersome, as it requires and understanding that they are essentially outliers and hence unique and over all lovable!

( I was told to contribute this article to a Book on R.B.Sapre published by Smt Meena PoI.I kept on procrastinating till I made an attempt only few days before going to press. Having written 250 blog posts ,it was essential to put on record my feelings and thoughts about this laconic man for posterity)

Posted in Family Matters, Journalism, Personal, Sports, Work.


Sage Markandeya

Shaktipeeth was a medium sized Novel written on Vedic History by Shri Patel . Tells us of the invasion of Kashmir and Uttaranchal by Huns and other brutal raiders  and How Mrukand and his clan fought valliantly with the help of tribes to drive then Huns away.

Then the southwards journey of the Sages towards Sahayadri and the finally making the Saptashringi as his abode to worship the goddess Parvati and while they travelled southwards how they taught agriculture

Posted in Blogs, Culture, Indology, Religion.


A day at home …..

A Day at Home….

As I moved up and down in my own home I could see that things fall apart gradually ,slowly and surely.

Take for instance the curved feeder to the geyser .The joint has been leaking keeping the bathroom wet and dengue menace is omnipresent. I had a plumber come in a year back .He fixed a new steel pipe but also put a small kink into it. Alas that changed the pressure system and the leakage continued. He had the audacity to charge in spite of non repair without any professional ethics.

This status had continued and we neglected till this day . A sinuous streak of water clinged to the tiles as it moved downwards silently …it eventually had reacted with the surface giving a browinish tinge underlining the tract beneath.Something had to be done about it …yet everyone just hoodwinked it and left to fate….Ke Sera Sera …..

The Sliding windows of drawing room had revolted and refused to budge and if you acted with brute force they would shudder with ball bearing wobbling underneath their weight. The task now required both hands used with skillful strength to prevent the glass panes come down. Every morning and while leaving home the act had to be put together solemnly and the burden came down on me as a sincere honest housekeeper of conscience…

It shall be repaired I had pledged to myself waiting for the day of liberation to arrive in earnest

Posted in Blogs, Family Matters, Urban Issues, Work.


Goa

The first time we visited was in 1985 with vijay and manasee kelkar. We were ar hotel solmar
@nd visit was with Ramesh and jyotsna Balajiwale at Cidade
3rd was with Eddie and shamira and Sasha at majorda and ofcourse Devendra
4th was with mahima at kamats
5th was at the home of Atul and Medha
6th was with Shamira and Noah and Iris at Mahendra Resort ,Varka and colva
7th is likely with Debashish and Bassam.

First Visit we went by train and came by flight.Saw the famous temples of Mangeshi and St Francis Church .The Taxi driver showed us the mines and waterfall .Lots of booze and beaches dona paula by Bus ,Teh tour conductor ept us entertained .
Second … We went to Casino at Cidade, Played in PPool and Beach…. Went to Molem Park and Murudeshwar . Could not go to gokak due to heavy rains. tiring tour.It was a great holiday due to Microwave purchase which gave us service for 20 years.We tried to enter the chappel ofdona paula but were prevented
3rdd was a package at Majorda, we went on cruise , had royal buffets …boozed, and highlight was a fight with Eddie
4th was courtesy Novartis for TB conference… a treat of knowledge at Litterature academy goa fine arts panjim where current international film festival is being held.Swam in the pool and regretted that I did not go to visit my cousin at Tivim.Went on Cruise

Posted in Uncategorized.


Bhopal and After

Bhopal And After
In 1984 I had just set shop and then this great tragedy struck within a year at a state capital .Industrialization had geared to a pace with lots of industries being set up at Thane Belapur Belt and environmental sciences were taking shape due to new diseases getting discovered as a result of acute and chronic toxicity to 1000s of new molecules discovered every year to improve human life.
I had never been to Bhopal. Last year I visited this beautiful city that reminded me of Udaipur with its lakes. And while we were doing sightseeing it did not strike me in the slightest to pay a visit to the site of UC factory which was to be made into a museum like the holocaust museum in Washington.
The reassuring aspect was that chest medicine had taken strong shape with Dr s.R.Kamat at the helm. He had conducted thorough research in the victims and published many articles in and international space. Being an industrial physician I understood the dynamics of the situation wee better that my clinicians friends. I could prove that when Dr Kumar wrote an article on runaway reactions of MIC and incorporated my comments to publish it in Journal of Industrial Medicine with due mention.
Now yesterday On 31st October 2014 after 30 years Warren Anderson died on Halloween day.The ghost of 15,000 plus people who died probably haunted him everyday ,Although he could avoided arrest and incarceration. Perhaps for all the heads would roll including eh factory inspectors and Minister of Labour ,Industries and commerce and Chemicals and fertilizers all implicated with babus who sat in state or centre clearing all processes and produce.
Stringent laws in USA made UC located this facility in a developing world and I would like the statistic that how much of the planned capacities of various chemical were for exports and how much for local use. Enlisting local talent which was in plenty they started in right earnest but what they never imagined was that huge population would migrate and settle in shanties near the factory and parasitize it as a mummy. Now actually they ran double risks with exposure inhouse and community as their TLVs would differ for both.
On that fatal night tones of chemicals got spilled causing acute respiratory failure due to cytotoxic effects on the airway and alveolar epithelium . Runway reactants also liberated Co and other deadly mistures causing severe damage to other organs as well. Eventually 15,000 died due to various ailments and even cancers and chronic disabilities. Medical aid was rushed in but it took some time before the actual poisions could be figured out and their antidotes.
The civil society and the police arrested all the officers and slammed cases on them many criminal. A warrant was issued on warren Anderson the CEO of UC and he was arrested when he visited Bhopal. But as expected a fishbone diagram pointed the needle to many in the hierarchy and some were made the scpe goat while other slipped off the noose.The disaster and its deverity was ain to Chernoble and perhaps Fukushima post Tsunami.
What were the lessons of Bhopal ?
1) Human life is precious and if anyone feels contrary, he will get himself into a extremely difficult situation from whih he may never get out till the end of his life .Exoneration is impossible
2) The risks involved in manufacture of hazardous chemicals are myriads and most business propositions would be unlucrative if systems and controls are out of place.Union Carbide suffered huge losses and had to be sold to Dow Chemicals which is still facing charges even after doling billions of dollars.
3) The principal occupier is liable in such situations even if he is not directly involved in decision making as he is the sole authority who has to own up responsibility irrespective of his knowledge , sill, qualification or location.
4) Although employer is implicated the employees too are liable as they are responsible for safety of rawmaterials,equipment maintainsnce, process and products .It is necessary that statutory safety needs are met with in storage and usage of chemicals .All adverse scenarios are visioned up and enacted thereupon to ensure safe handling and transportations within premises and outside. Inflammable materials are of special mention and containments incase of fire by open flame or short circuit.
TBC

Posted in Community Concerns, Design, environment, health, Law, Management, Technology, Urban Issues.


The Fire Drill

The Fire Drill
It was a typical diwali day and the city was buzz with activity .Meeting and Eating is a popular activity as much as touring and travelling .So we were invited by Drs Ravi and Vidya for a dinner at Saffron Spice. We descended down got into the car and as we went for the main entrance We saw horde of members looking upwards. None stopped us …but we enquired …fire they said and we halted to take a count.
As we stretched our neck, we could see some faint flickering light emanating from 12th floor. The floors above were in darkness and many had climbed down the staircase as lifts were stopped although some had come down to rescue area crossed over to wing 2 and got down on ground.
I halted our vehicle outside the gate and came back to enquire for details. Yes the flat was locked from inside as some interior work was going on they said. Meanwhile Dr Ravi had called twice .Then I dropped wife at Saffron Spice and came back to experience and observe as fire can suddenly escalate depending on the circumstances . Meanwhile the fire tenders and Damkal had arrived . And they went up the lift.Every one felt reassured as the situation remained under control and professional help had arrived in 10 minutes flat. That was the time my son called me and gave me a green signal to proceed with my schedule.He too had a date with his friends for a Diwali Party.
Off I went and had a great time with Iyer & family.We came back late having ahad a sumptuous dinner.
After 3 days there was this meeting in the society to apprise the members as to what went wrong and to tae a stock of the situation so that there would be no repitiotion.
TBC

Posted in Community Concerns, Management, Urban Issues.


Raju Acharya – My Friend

Posted in Friendship.


A Professional Publication

25 years back a youth was brought in by his father.He was reffered by the amicable family physican Dr Nallumakkal Kunjuvelu Valan the small doctor with a large heart.
I had given him the best possible care addressing all his adolescent issues including his pulomary problem which essentially was allergy with airway disorder.He came regularly inspite of coming from an humble background and such clients always get better attention and treatment for their involvement.Medical problems are routiene what is not routiene is the way it is handled by family members.Those who look it as a teamwork succeed.
That’s what happened to FS .He improved and with that his confidence in me as his guide and mentor.He was not very bright but he had a right attitude an important atrtribute in positive outcome.With clinical improvement his academic performance too improved and he could complete his diploma in engineering which landed him a job in chemical company.
As time passed he got controlled due to immunotherapy combined withpharmacotherapy. Now he was only on maintainance or sos medication an endpoint in airway disorder of BHR.he then relocated to Saudi for lucre and eventually got married.
He suddenly appeared after 20 years with all records intact.Although we did have his allergy tests report copy on our file.He was a soft spoken gentleman groomed by his parents.He was receptive and attentive and cooperative.Moreover due to his interest in what his problem was he could clearly understand what was palnned for him and without bias complied well with on going effort to evaluate and intervene.
This time I thought to report his case in one of the finest Indian journal ,one of its kind published from New Delhi.So the process began with rough notes and a preliminary draft .I sent a letter to honorable Dr s.N Gaur and he felt that the case was interesting.hat pepped me up.So I refined it and finally through the E Portal sent it for peer review.Now little did I now that the rigors of publication are a herculean task.The submission came back with periodic promptness for further clarification.The referees were ruthless and needed objectivity .I complied setting time to realign my thoughts and references maing it authentic ans as scientific as possible….but the queries continued unabatedly.
Now I was in USA and thought that finally I have solved all questions and mared them well on PDF format . But to my dismay. The board was too demanding for excellence.I sat back and speculated that this effort was going to be invain and fruitless.So I relegated it to background…..I returned from USA and put the matter in cold storage.But the editors sent it bac for correction and persued the paper without respite.I had to relent and I reciprocated with newer enthusiasm.
After multiple rallies bac and forth, I finally envisioned a report which was to see the light of the day.And it did with fine graphical and tabular presentations and a convincing bibliography of references.
The process had taen six months and finally when it came published in E format and then a hard copy.I realized the value of writted and printed word as against something that just appears in the media or internet.The case had put my entire practice of 30 years in perspective and underlined the scientific ethos and zea with l which I had practiced persuasively putting all principles of therapeutics before commercialism .I had ultimately succeded in showcasing this diligent attitude and continuity for posterity.I thanked my teachers who had put the spirit of enquiry and scientific principles in my mind as the winning philosophy.

Posted in Medicines, Personal, Research, Writing.


Holocaust in Valley

Having returned from USA where we travelled West ,East and South extensively we deserved no holiday anymore.Yet when my school frien Arun called up , I could not resist.
“We are getting best deals in airfare” he declared as I convinced my wife who was reluctant. “We have never been to Kashmir” I exclaimed justifying the tour.

Holocaust in the Valley


We had just returned from our US trip and were in raptures for the perfectly timed and designed tour where we achieved something phenomenal.We surely did not deserve another holiday…..but it came calling within a few days after we landed in Mumbai


Arun  has been my buddy since kindergarten days.We were in malinis montessary on saint paul street before we joined st pauls high school.We were with him in Bhopal but we hardly had some time out so he called me and told me about very attractive air fares  to Shrinagar and back.


Well I thought …I have never been to Kashmir and he too has never been so what the hell cant we go after 3 months of work in office. I convinced my wife who was reluctant….days passed bye and Shekhar opted out for elections at a cooperative ban where he was to be on board of directors…we were scouting for hotels in the valley just then Iris ushered two sales women who sold a very reasonable holiday pacage to us. It was distinctly promotional.2000 Rs per day at good hotels with free breakfast and dinner….We thought hardly …worth a risk…sent Ravi to their office and paid 16000 upfront for the stay.


Pine Spring hotels was a chain owned by Mr Iqbal and the property was stylish and décor ambient as Arun researched on the net.


So off we went to Nowgaon and stayed for 2 days,. On day 2 we had Mr shahani dine with us .He is ex VJTI now working for J&K Dept of irrigation.A cement company was hosting their dealers too. We chatted and dined.A small episode of mobile loss and gain to happened here but the staff was courteous and decent.


Shrinagar we thought was dusty and chaotic…with lots of construction and crowded. Tere wer traffic jams and for a city dweller it was a bad experience.Nowgaon hotel was opp Shrinagar Station and this station was minimally utilized a sad fact like US where railways are not promoted due to car and steel and petroleum boom and lobby.


Arun had Bacardy with him and we got some from a local stores which over charged.There is prohibition in the Valley and later we realized that it is actually a special arrangement where Indian Army stands to gain by selling stuff in blac market.


Next day we went to Gulmarg . Tourism is hyped and coerced here.With over charging and fleecing the tourist lock stock and barrel.We had no choice but to relent although we brought the taxi man to bargain hard.We went to Gondola and there were touts whch is sickening…We balmed it on Omar Abdullah and his coterie for all the malpractise. The Gondola took us to station 1 but it rained very heavily …we had lunch and then returned to go to station 2 the clouds hung low and visibility was a few feet.No use going further for snow as Rane couple didi not risk the cold.Down we came to station 1 and took horse ride to Kihalnmarg  a place where ice sports takes off in Dec Jan. We dran herbal and mineral  waters  thast came down fro a glacier. Pictures and then back only to find the ropeway gone out of order.We had to trek back on foot an ordeal as we were unprepared. The horsemen tempted us with wrong information.And locals again cheated us. We came back intact but famished and fatigues.Good wife had not come as she had caought a cold and suffered dyspnoea due to altitude and congestion.


Next day Sonmarg on Kargil route…Rs 4000 for only 50 odd kilometers .The ranges were gorgeous and valleys luring as we saw a last grazing village and lots of shepards and livestaok.We kept drinking Cawah.The Sindhu river kept us company lie th Dal and Jhelum in Shrinagar.We went to India gate and then the glacier where the waters drain into sindhu and some waters into Pakistan.Then we went to Zozila pass and on way to Ladhak as landscape changed to hue of red and brown. This part was amazing and gave us a glimpse of how the travel to Kargil would be.Pictures taken at war memorial and the last tree before the barren yet beautiful terrain starts.


At one point there was this last tree standing tall on the mountain slope on corner of a jagged angle while 500 feet below the river flowed ,thereafter the treeain changes to different hues of brown,red,chocolate with a huge valley right in front covered with grass where sheep grazed but not a tree for miles till the horizonLadakh is a desert in the mountains and the beauty amazing and coulorful.


On way back we had Rishta and Wazwan meat that stuck in our dental crevices .We came back tired the driver ws full blodded and at one point he took us on a dirt road descent which gave us the thrill and goosebumps surely unnecessary but we had no choice as we sat stiff on hairpin bends while the vehicle meandeared short of slipping .Finally when we made it to the tar road w could roughly identify the spot at which we hit this road but could not trace the route which we descended nearly 500 feet.


Pine spring at Gulmarg is neat the gondola and we retired with an accomplished day which drained us financilaay as well.


Next day we proceeded to Pehellgam via ofcourse the unavoidable Shrinagar and the traffic which irritated us.As we left shrinagar we saw fields of saffron and Kashmiri rice as the grass took different hues and apple orchards .Then our driver acted as an agent and got us to a spice joint where we spent a fortune due to sweet talk of a Kashmiri merchant who sold us merchandice which proved to be rotten especially walnuts which developed fungus known to release aflatoxin a vry strong carcinogen and hence very painfully discarded it. He was a liar and a cheater rolled into one as looks can be deceptive .We withdrew money from a neighbouring ATM while it rained incessantly . finally getting him off the back we headed for the mountains into the scenic Pehelgam as rains grew stronger and continuous…Now for a coastal fellow like me rains are no stranger and can be endured in sahayadri belt ,but to encounter rains at this altitude was unfortunate and bewildering .I kep on telling my self that in Himalayas it rains withour rime or reason and without forewarning.My own experience at Vaishnodevi and Pindari substaintiated this aspect and I brushed it off until we hit Lidder river which had swelled four times it size and which flowed menacingly downwards into the valley.


The traffic was sparse and finally we crossed two tributaries and came to our destibation at Pine spring hotel on mountains slope .



On way back we had Rishta and Wazwan meat that stuck in our dental crvices


On way back we had Rishta and Wazwan meat that stuck in our dental crevices .We came back tired the driver ws full blodded and at one point he took us on a dirt road descent which gave us the thrill and goosebumps surely unnecessary but we had no choice as we sat stiff on hairpin bends while the vehicle meandeared short of slipping .Finally when we made it to the tar road w could roughly identify the spot at which we hit this road but could not trace the route which we descended nearly 500 feet.


Pine spring at Gulmarg is neat the gondola and we retired with an accomplished day which drained us financilaay as well.


Next day we proceeded to Pehellgam via ofcourse the unavoidable Shrinagar and the traffic which irritated us.As we left shrinagar we saw fields of saffron and Kashmiri rice as the grass took different hues and apple orchards .Then our driver acted as an agent and got us to a spice joint where we spent a fortune due to sweet talk of a Kashmiri merchant who sold us merchandice which proved to be rotten especially walnuts which developed fungus known to release aflatoxin a vry strong carcinogen and hence very painfully discarded it. He was a liar and a cheater rolled into one as looks can be deceptive .We withdrew money from a neighbouring ATM while it rained incessantly . finally getting him off the back we headed for the mountains into the scenic Pehelgam as rains grew stronger and continuous…Now for a coastal fellow like me rains are no stranger and can be endured in sahayadri belt ,but to encounter rains at this altitude was unfortunate and bewildering .I kep on telling my self that in Himalayas it rains withour rime or reason and without forewarning.My own experience at Vaishnodevi and Pindari substaintiated this aspect and I brushed it off until we hit Lidder river which had swelled four times it size and which flowed menacingly downwards into the valley.


The traffic was sparse and finally we crossed two tributaries and came to our destibation at Pine spring hotel on mountains slope .


Posted in Blogs, Design, Indology, Travel, Urban Issues.




Copyright © 2015 Rediff.com India Limited. All rights Reserved.  
Terms of Use  |   Disclaimer  |   Feedback  |   Advertise with us