Ukraine Russia War

Do the citizens of Ukraine or any country for that matter want the war? The answer is in negative. It is their leadership that is responsible for bringing untold suffering on them. The country has been ravaged, millions have lost everything. The future seems to very bleak for the survivors. Little children have lost their parents. Is it the fault of the innocent citizens?

With the formation of UN after world war II, it was thought that most countries involved in the war had learnt their lesson but it was a wishful thinking. USA wants to police the whole world. It has a bleak record of misadventures all around the world at Afghanistan, Korea, and Taiwan. But even then it doesn’t stop.

Surely Russia should not have engaged in war but it’s US and it’s allies in NATO who are more responsible for all this. The irony is that these countries themselves have nothing to lose. It is the Ukrainian people who are suffering.

I don’t think Ukrainian government should have played into the hands of NATO because of its geological location abutting the mighty Russia. No country will tolerate the enemy guns stationed at its border as is the plan of NATO.

It is clear that Russia will not tolerate that NATO should be breathing on its neck. Everyone is aware that during the cold war between Eastern Bloc and NATO countries lead by USA, Russia found an sympathiser in Cuba which is the neighbour of USA. Russia brought weapons to Cuba. USA didn’t liked it. After so much tension, the situation was diffused. But the world does not learn from the past. USA has repeated the Cuba crisis here.

Ukraine has been ravaged beyond imagination by the war. The ordinary folks who work so hard to make a house, to furnish it for comfortable life and to educate their dear children have lost whatever they made made. It is heart wrenching to see the horrifying images of destruction.

Despite USA trying everything to weaken Russia by cutting it off from the global commerce but it has been to no effect. I think has boomeranged because most of the Europe is dependent on gas from Russia. The response of the West Asian countries to step in to compensate for Russian gas. It should stop arming the Ukraine so that war stops.

More than 1 million Ukrainian have left the country to find refuge in the neighbouring countries like Poland. It is a madness on the part of engaged parties. Ukraine has become the scapegoat and bore the brunt of Russia’s anger.

Navjot Singh: Laughing Sidhu

Navjot Singh Sidhu is again in the news. Actually the men his ilk are designed by the God to be in the news. It is not for the better reasons but most of the times for wrong reasons.

The man is an compulsive liar and a hypocrite. There is not even an iota of remorse in him. From his body language one can see the arrogance dripping.

He has created a upheaval in his own party government in Punjab. He has manoeuvred to dethrone the chief minister Amarinder Singh. After this feat he was expecting to get Chief Ministership. But party high command has other ideas keeping in view the upcoming elections. He was bypassed.

For few days, he was acting very brotherly with the newly appointed chief minister but suddenly on an impulse he resigned from the post of State Congress Chief. He must be having hopes that either BJP or AAP will lap him up but this didn’t happen.

His whole life has been like that only. There is not an iota of truth in whatever he is saying.

You must have watched him on Kapil Sharma’s show. He was paid for laughing and denigrating many in the audience.

When he was in his twenties, he was sentenced to 3 years jail punishment by high court in Chandigarh on the charges of beating a old man of 61 years age and in the process killing him. But hailing from an influential family with political links nothing came to harm him.

Navjot Singh Sidhu

At that time he was acquitted of the crime and he forgot it as a bad dream. But sometime dreams chase you and caught you in the end. Sidhu who is having a gift of gabbiness; who does not allow anyone to speak because he talks incessantly, invokes the name of god and great sufi saints of punjab who taught us all the love of mankind and compassion.

The fact is that Sidhu is the son of an influential person of Punjab and must have been spoiled brat when the incident occurred 32 years back; he was 20 then. After this he has simply forgotten the incident. Became a TV anchor, cricket commentator and was having the best of fun when suddenly this judgement prompted by political situation in  Punjab was handed out to him.

But the man is so arrogant, remorseless and obdurate that not even once he has gone to the bereaved family to say sorry. He has taken the life of a person and even then after the judgement he was invoking the couplets of God.

Where to Tricity???

Tricity-meaning three cities combined. One such tricity consists of 3 cities namely: Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula. Chandigarh was planned a new city as the capital of Punjab when Lahore was lost to Pakistan.

It was matter of prestige for Jawahar Lal Nehru, the first prime minister of independent India who wanted to assuage the sufferings of the Punjab which befell it due to partition. Everyone is aware of the beautifully planned city.

As the years went by, States of Himachal Pradesh and Haryana were separated from the Punjab. There was a demand by Punjab to hand over the Chandigarh city to it. Haryana also claimed the city. So the city became a object of strife between these states.


Areas which consisted Haryana were not developed like Punjab, the area being dry and hotter in weather and ignored by Governments of Punjab which were dominated by people from western parts. In a sense, Haryana was to begin from the beginning and task seemed to be daunting but has been surmounted successfully. There were disputes regarding sharing of river waters.

Moreover, they did not have any city for being selected as the capital. Capital city actually should be in the centre of the state equally approachable. After division even Chandigarh became on the border of two states away from majority areas of the Punjab.

Official Logo of the city

It was then decided to make Chandigarh a Union territory administered by Central government in addition to being the capital for Punjab as well as Haryana. The fact was nobody in the political and administrative circles wanted to be away from the city beautiful.

Cricket Stadium in Mohali

To establish more offices both Punjab and Haryana developed Mohali and Panchkula respectively which are just the extensions of Chandigarh in design and pattern.

With the development of these cities, population exploded because in the beginning the rates of properties were low as compared to Chandigarh. The Chandigarh design prohibits the city to grow vertically. So Mohali and Panchkula became the new places for building activity. The villages in the periphery of these cities also becomes crowded due to lower rentals as compared to tricity.

Rose Garden

For workforce people migrated from Eastern UP and Bihar. They slowly settled here and engaged in any type of work be it agriculture or building or vegetable vendors or security guards and rickshaws drivers and what not. Shanties came up like Mumbai.

The area is now populated with people all over from Haryana , Punjab, and Himachal Pradesh. Vehicles have exploded in numbers. Everyone seems to becomes rich overnight. There is floating population.

So everyday, the newspapers are full of stories of crime, rapes, theft, killings, accidents due to rash driving under the influence of alcohol. The original people who had the land become super rich overnight by selling portions of the land. They indulge in spending a on boozing, expensive cars and other activities.

Famous Sukhna Lake

Prices of the property have skyrocketed and cases of malpractices in acquiring the properties by government agencies abound.

The tricity is in highly dynamical state and it seems that it shall not stabilise easily. Time does not seem to near when residents shall begin to consider the city their own and care for it. We who belong to those place by birth and times when there was just Chandigarh and had agriculture land find it hard to believe the change.

Opium poppy: Seeds of Trade

Britain ruled India not for nothing. They exploited the abundant natural resources as well its simple folks. They earned huge profits by exporting tea, opium and cotton to Europe. They employed the Indians like Africans as labors in many of their colonies overseas where there was a shortage of labor for cultivation.

Poppy pods

Opium obtained from poppies grown in the fertile valley of Ganges in Bihar was considered of high quality because of its high alkaloid morphine. It was traditionally grown in this region since the times of Mughals who were heavy users of it and many of their princes are known to become addicts.

Opium poppies yield valuable alkaloids used as medicines. Medicines produced from opium poppies include morphine and codeine. Its cultivation and production is strictly controlled because opium poppies are also used to make illegal and highly addictive drugs such as heroin.

It has many names such as Opium poppy, common poppy, garden poppy, chessbolls in English, Kas-kas, kashkash, aphim, afim, afyun in Hindi, Ahiphenam, aphukam, ahifen, chosa, khasa in Sanskrit, Posto in Bengal, Aphina, khuskhus, posta in Gujarat, Abini, gashagasha, kasakasa in Tamil. Its botanical name is Papaver somniferum Family: Papaveraceae, the poppy family.

The plant has flowers with papery petals that can vary in colour from white to red or lilac with a darker purple base. Fruits – a rounded capsule topped with the disc-like stigma remains. The liquid that is obtained from the fruit capsule by making cuts with a knife contains morphine alkaloids which are dried to produce raw opium.

Opium is used to manufacture medicinal drugs like codeine and morphine, and for illegal drugs such as heroin. Seeds – small and black, dark blue or yellow-white. The seeds are edible and tasty and are used in bakery products such as poppy-seeded bread.

Opium flourished in the Arab world, as in Islam opiates were not prohibited in the same way as alcohol. In the 7th century, the Islamic cultures of western Asia had discovered that the most powerful narcotic and medicinal effects could be obtained by igniting and smoking the poppy’s congealed juices.

The history of opium poppy use is relatively recent in South Asia. Arab trade and the expanding world of Islam are assumed to have introduced knowledge of the opium drug to the Indian subcontinent by the 12th century.

The first records of its cultivation appear in the 15th century and refer to Malwa as a centre of production. The Sanskrit words ahiphena and the Hindi afin are derived from the Arabic word ofyun to denote opium.

The advent of the Europeans had a significant impact on the future of the opium poppy in India. The Dutch now introduced smoking opium in a tobacco pipe to the Chinese.

As the decline of the Mughals began, the State lost its hold on the monopoly and the production and sale of opium was controlled by merchants in Patna. In 1757, the British East India Company which had by that time assumed the responsibility for the collection of revenues in Bengal and Bihar, took over this monopoly.

In 1773 the Governor-General, Warren Hastings, brought the whole of the opium trade under the control of the Government.

In the late 18th century the British East India Company was expanding its sphere of influence in India. East India Company began sending large quantities of opium to China through Hongkong. The profits were very high.

The Chinese had become addicted to opium consumption and country began to weaken both in terms of moral and economics. The Imperial court tried to ban the use and import, but British would not heed. Also they were not directly in the picture. It was the ships owned by rich Indians which carried out this trade.

They reached near Chinese shores and moored in the sea and speed boats owned by smugglers unloaded the opium for taking illegally to the shores. The poppy growing was mostly confined to three centres: Patna Opium from Bihar, Benaras Opium from Uttar Pradesh and Malwa Opium from central India.

The Chinese authorities attempted to suppress the smuggling of opium which was debilitating the country and reversing its formerly favourable balance of trade. Their confiscation and destruction of illegal opium sparked the First Opium War in 1839.

British warships defeated the Chinese who signed the Treaty of Nanking paying a huge indemnity and ceding Hong Kong to the British. A second Opium War was fought in 1856 when the French and British combined to bring the Chinese to heel and opium import in China was thus legalised. Not until 1910 did the opium trade between China and India cease.

The unripe seed pods of the opium poppy contain a group of alkaloids known as opiates that are often used as sedatives. The alkaloids can reduce pain, alter mood and behaviour, and induce sleep or stupor. It is a narcotic and potentially highly addictive.

In traditional medicine opium was made from the air-dried milky latex or juice from the unripe seeds from poppies. The quality of opium would vary depending on whether black or white seeds were used.

Opium from India contained not only high levels of the alkaloid morphine but also the alkaloid codeine. This could explain why it was traditionally used to relieve pain and to suppress coughs. The presence of another alkaloid called papaverine in the seeds could explain why the extracts relaxed muscles and reduced stomach and respiratory spasms.

The seeds were also used in Ayurveda and Siddha medicine. They were cooked and ground with sugar and cardamom seeds and used to treat diarrhoea, coughs and asthma. Extracts of poppies were used to treat fevers, tuberculosis, liver and kidney problems as well as diseases of the urinary tract.

Unlike the unripe seed capsules of opium poppies, the ripe seeds do not contain narcotic chemicals. They are used in many forms of cooking. The seeds can be cooked in water with oil and salt and served with rice where they provide a nutty flavour. They are also blended with tamarind into a curry paste. In confectionery they are sprinkled on sweets and are added to baked goods like breads and cakes.

Nobel Prize Controversies 

This article pertains to October 2015.

Nobel Prizes for this year are on. Already the prize for medicine has already been announced to William C. Campbell, Satoshi Ōmura and Tu Youyou on nature based medicines. Prizes in other categories will be announced one by one.

There had been times when Controversies arose over the prizes. Following is the list of some controversial prizes.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Henry Kissinger

Peace prize to Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho, in 1973 is considered as the most controversial. Two members resigned from committee in protest.
Milton Friedman

Economics prize to Milton Friedman in 1076 for his work on free markets. His association with Chilean dictator Pinochet irked the protesters.

Barrack Obama

When Barack Obama received peace prize in 2009. He was less than a year in office. Judges noticed even Obama was not too enthusiastic about it.

Jules Hoffman, Bruce Beutler, Ralph Steinman

Medicine prize to Jules Hoffman, Bruce Beutler, Ralph Steinman in 2011. This prize would have been uncontroversial except for the fact that Steinman had died a few days earlier the prize was announced. Controversial point was that it cannot be given posthumously and committee made the exception saying they were not aware of his death.

Mahatma Gandhi

And Nobel Prize for Mahatma Gandhi that never was. There is hardly anyone in the world who doesn’t know his contribution towards non violence. In fact he was the founder of this movement. He was nominated 5 times for the but never won. This again may be due to pressure from the powerful nation. The Nobel committee has since realized the biggest blunder they have committed. His non violence movement has in fact become guiding star for people such as Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela. In 1989 when peace prize was given to Dalai lama the chairman of committee paid rich tributes to Gandhi.

Milking the Great

In India, there are always plenty of people with vested interests. They hijack the name of some great man and exploit it for religious, political and other interest by creating the frenzy among the gullible people. But ultimate aim is to create a life of riches and comfort for themselves and their coming generations. For this they even don’t spare their own innocent people.

Take for example, Mahatma Gandhi. He tried his best to become apolitical and urged to disband the congress on the logic that its role is over once the country became independent. No one bothered to listen to him because everyone from Jawahar Lal Nehru to Jinnah were busy in hastening the partisan of India on the lines of religion. His death, conspired or caused by Hindu fanatics as is taught, proved even a greater boon to Indian Congress party. It ruled the country in his name for years. So a great man is even more useful as a martyr than when alive as is said of the elephants whose tusk is invaluable.

Not only he, history brims with such cases. BJP of India grabbed the Hindu Gods like Rama, Sita & Krishna. Like Arjun, their leader Lal Krishna Advani whose lifelong and unfulfilled desire was become the Prime Minister of India, went on a Rath (chariot) yatra all over the country causing riots and destruction of a already dilapidated Masjid called Babari Masjid which they claimed have been constructed by destroying a temple of Rama. He shall not rest peacefully till he again regains the glory fro Rama by constructing the temple there.

There is another example of the saint Sai Baba. He lived the life of a Fakir getting his food of two times as alms. He lived in utter simplicity in Shirdi village of Maharashtra. All his life he blessed the people irrespective their caste, creed, social and economic status. Many people who were jealous of his popularity tried to defame him but every time he came out victorious. But now everyone knows about the riches that are showered daily on his statue. There is hard cash, gold and what not. The Prasad is recycled. Thousands of people wait in the queues for hours to go before the statue and offer whatever is their capacity. So some clever people made a well thought of program and propaganda and publicity about the miracles Baba performed to heal the ill, to free them from the yolk of debt and make their land fertile and make the barren women bear the children, lured the today’s gullible and poor and unhappy people into believing the same for themselves. Rich people come for another reason, to ask the Baba for sheltering them against the law and other problems.

And most of the people living in India are so incredulous and hope to strike it rich without putting in the hard work resort to these shortcuts.

Another famous man is Baba Saheb Bhim Rao Ambedkar who is termed as Messiah of downtrodden and outcasts of India. The Aryans who created the four classes of people based on the kind of the profession they and their families have been carrying out since generations. Since Aryans are supposed have come from outside and subdued the indigenous people put themselves in upper classes and the vanquished into menial class for doing the lowest of jobs in the society. Dr. Ambedkar fought for them. Himself hailing from humble family, he worked hard and studied and won many merit scholarships and qualified as a lawyer from England. When the India became independent, he became the father of the constitution of India.

The number of such outcast class people in India is very high and again it was congress first which captured the Ambedkar’s name and exploited it for its votes. Reservations were created for these people in every Government Job and availing of other facilities like loans to uplift their economic condition and bringing them back into the social fold on equal footing by compensating for the injustice meted out to them over centuries. In reality, only a few of them have benefited from these measures and the lot of most others still is bad.

Then came Mayawati who was even more shrewd. She played the game that why should people from higher castes and classes take in their hands the lot of downtrodden. I am here and I shall improve the lot of such miserable who are from my community, no one else is authorized. So with this brainwashing she and her Godfather Kanshi Ram founded a party called Bahujan Samaj Party and won the elections and became the chief minister of the most populous state of India and ruled like a queen. Her lifestyle could put the natural queens to shame. She had hundreds of security guards, food tasters, latest luxury vehicles at her disposal. But what the people whose leader she is and whom she promised a good respectable life did get? Nothing but disappointment. Only the sharks benefited along with herself and people close to her.

The list goes on………………………..

Spying on the leaders

It was when Russia was USSR and soviet state was pushing hard to become at par with US. A top erstwhile spy told that Russian Soviet dictator Stalin, used to spy on the visiting world leaders like Mao to know their hidden personality traits. They even used scientific methods for this. Soviets used to analyze the excreta for Potassium and Amino acid tryptophan to know the state of mind of the leaders. Tryptophan is used by animals for synthesis of proteins essential for growth. Studies indicate that it acts as an antidepressant.

For example, if they detected high levels of amino acid Tryptophan,“ he explained, “they concluded that person was calm and approachable”. On the other hand, potassium ion regulate the blood pressure. The diets rich in Potassium help reduce the high blood pressure. But a lack of potassium in poo was seen as a sign of a nervous disposition and someone with insomnia.


Western powers have monopolized the nuclear power and weapons. Russia and US hold 92% of the resources. Treaties like CTBT discriminate against the rest of the countries who want to use nuclear resources even for peaceful purposes. India has not signed this treaty. Supply of nuclear materials is controlled by Nuclear Supplies Group (NSG) which is largely controlled by US and Russia and puts discriminatory conditions on developing nations.This is why they are bitterly opposing nuclear tests by North Korea who is not toeing to their line.
Here are statistics

No. of nuclear tests:

US: 1030

USSR Russia: 715

France: 210

UK: 45

China: 45

North Korea: 6

India: 3

Pakistan: 2

Nuclear Inventory

Russia: 7000

US: 6800

France: 300

China: 270

UK: 215

Pakistan: 125

India: 115

Israel: 80

Price of being a whistleblower

Jagjeet Singh is a photographer. He has a shop of videography and photography in Tarn Taran. He shot video of Punjab police officials thrashing a woman in 2013. With the video becoming public he became a whistleblower and his woes began.

He got threats and harassment. He stopped getting photography assignments. After approaching the authorities he was provided with security cover. Now he is in Chandigarh, the capital of Punjab, to obtain permission to sit on indefinite hunger strike to withdraw his security cover because he is unable to bear the expenditure of the security. It means that security instead of guarding him has been made to burden him and break him financially.

He says his shop has been shut due to the assignments being absent under the fear of powers that be. So he is paying the price for being a whistleblower.

Jag jet Singh

Code of Controversy

Lui Liu is a painter of Chinese origin and lives in Canada. He mostly paints nudes. His paintings seems like dreams. Some critics call his paintings magic realism. But he says that magic realism is a genre of writing invented by South American writer most notably Gabriel García Márquez whose novel “Hundred years of solitude” is written in this genre.

Lui Liu says that magic realism in strict terms is a way of telling surreal stories in which even dead people converse with living but these do not contain any political message.

Lui Liu seems to be a person often in a daze, for he cannot recite his home address and is likely to give a wrong phone number. However, when he talks about things like psychology and ongoing world issues, he is totally another person, with abundant ideas and clear analysis.

It’s hard to believe this man knows about the outside world so well when he spends almost every day at home painting and has few social activities. He doesn’t even have a mobile phone. He said casual chats with a few close friends and surfing on Sina Weibo provide him with enough information to keep up with the latest happenings around the world.

No two interpretations can be the same.
Many interpretations have been given like the one given below:
There are 4 women playing the Chines Mahjong. The woman with the tattoos on her back is China. On the left, focused intensely on the game, is Japan. The one with the shirt and head cocked to the side is America. Lying provocatively on the floor is Russia. And the little girl standing to the side is Taiwan.

China’s visible set of tiles “East Wind” has a dual meaning. First, it signifies China’s revival as a world power. Second, it signifies the military might and weaponry that China possesses has already been placed on the table. On one hand, China appears to be in a good position, but we cannot see the rest of her hand. Additionally, she is also handling some hidden tiles below the table.

America looks confident, but is glancing at Taiwan, trying to read something off of Taiwan’s expression, and at the same time seems to be hinting something at Taiwan.
Russia appears to be disinterested in the game, but this is far from the truth. One foot hooks coyly at America, while her hand passes a hidden tile to China, both countries can be said to be exchanging benefits in secret. Japan is all seriousness while staring at her own set of tiles, and is oblivious to the actions of the others in her self-focused state.

Taiwan wears a traditional red slip, symbolizing that she is the true heir of Chinese culture and civilization. In one hand she has a bowl of fruit, and in the other, a paring knife. Her expression as she stares at China is full of anger, sadness, and hatred, but to no avail; unless she enters the game, no matter who ends up as the victor, she is doomed to a fate of serving fruit.

Outside the riverbank is darkened by storm clouds, suggesting the high tension between the two nations is dangerously explosive. The painting hanging on the wall is also very meaningful; Mao’s face, but with Chiang Kai Shek’s bald head, and Sun Yat-Sen’s mustache.

The four women’s state of undress represent the situation in each country. China is naked on top, clothed with a skirt and underwear on the bottom. America wears a bra and a light jacket, but is naked on the bottom. Russia has only her underwear left. Japan has nothing left.
At first glance, America appears to be most composed and seems to be the best position, as all the others are in various states of nakedness. However, while America may look radiant, her vulnerability has already been exposed. China and Russia may look naked, yet their key private parts remain hidden.

If the stakes of this game is that the loser strips off a piece of clothing, then if China loses, she will be in the same state as Russia (similar to when the USSR dissolved). If America loses, she also ends up in the same state as Russia. If Russia loses, she loses all. Japan has already lost everything.

Russia seems to be a mere “filler” player, but in fact is exchanging tiles with China. The real “filler” player is Japan, for Japan has nothing more to lose, and if she loses just once more she is immediately out of the game.

America may look like she is in the best position, but in fact is in a lot of danger, if she loses this round, she will give up her position as a world power. Russia is the most sinister, playing along with both sides, much like when China was de-occupied, she leaned towards the USSR and then towards America; as she did not have the ability to survive on her own, she had to weave between both sides in order to survive and develop.
There are too many of China’s tiles that we cannot see. Perhaps suggesting that China has several hidden aces? Additionally China is also exchanging tiles with Russia, while America can only guess from Taiwan’s expression of what actions have transpired between Russia and China. Japan on the other hand is completely oblivious, still focused solely on her own set of tiles.

Taiwan stares coldly at the game from aside. She sees everything that the players at the table are doing, she understands everything that is going on. But she doesn’t have the means or permission to join the game, she isn’t even given the right to speak. Even if she has a dearth of complaints, she cannot voice it to anyone, all she can do is to be a good page girl, and bring fresh fruit to the victor.

The final victor lies between China and America, this much is apparent. But look closely; while America is capable, they are playing Chinese Mahjong, not Western Poker. Playing by the rules of China, how much chance at victory does America really have?

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