Rajasthan

Some places renamed in India during last 6 year

India has been on the name changing spree. During last 5 years names of many places, roads and monuments have been changed on the basis of the present names being reminder of colonial era or names being derogatory and names of some places being after some Moghul king who was not positively inclined towards the original inhabitants. Another argument for changing names was to replace those alien names with our own local heroes. Here is a list of some changed names during last 5 years in chronological order. November 2014 Bangalore became Bangaluru. In all, the names of 12 places… Read More »Some places renamed in India during last 6 year

Songs of Kuldeep Manak: Fragrance of Punjabi Soil

In North India particularly Punjab and Rajasthan, traditionally folk singers belonged to mostly Muslim communities. Foremost example is that of Mardana, the disciple of Guru Nanak, who played the Rabab when Guru sang the hymns of the God. He along with Bala were constant companions of the Guru and accompanied him on his sojourns far and wide. The tradition continued and many of the famous singers in Punjab claim to be the descendants of Mardana thorugh many generations. Also they have become so attached to Sikhism that from their outlook supporting the turban and beard, no one distinguishes them from… Read More »Songs of Kuldeep Manak: Fragrance of Punjabi Soil

Fabled Jand Tree

There are many references to “Jand” tree in Punjabi literature. Foremost it is connected to a place called Danabad the village of Mirza in the legend of “Mirza-Sahiban”. After getting Sahiba from her home on the day of her marriage to someone else, and sneaking on his mare-called Bakki in local language, he decides to take rest under the cool shade of Jand tree. He was overconfident that even after taking rest for the summer noon, he will make it easily to his native place before the end of the day. Rest is well known. He was killed by Sahiban’s… Read More »Fabled Jand Tree

Bishnois: The First Environmentalists of India

Bishnois are a community living in Rajasthan of India. They live in complete harmony with nature. In the old times, the womenfolk sacrificed their lives protecting the hacking of trees. Bishnoi means twenty nine: Bees meaning twenty and nao meaning nine. They live their lives according to the 29 principles. All these principles are to live in perfect harmony with nature. They protect plants, trees and animals. They get everything for sustenance from mother nature taking only that much what is required.  Bishnois consider it their ‘Dharma’ to save lives of animals and trees. Many animals like peacocks and antlers… Read More »Bishnois: The First Environmentalists of India

Indian Monitor Lizard

Also called Bengal monitor (Varanus bengalensis) or common Indian monitor. Large or adult lizards generally dwell on the soil but smaller or juveniles also use tree cavities to dwell. Many are found inside the crevices in the hill rocks. These have a very shy nature as well as keen eye sight and can detect human presence from a considerable distance. They look ferocious but are generally harmless. They eat eggs of birds and small animals like fish, small lizards. They are very common in the South East Asia and Indian subcontinent. They are called by different names in various parts of India.… Read More »Indian Monitor Lizard

Ghaggar River: The Lost Glory

Introduction The rivers in India are of two types. The ones like Ganga and Indus are perennial in nature because they originate in Himalayas and are fed by melting ice. Others are intermittent in nature. Their catchment area is foothills of Himalayas and these flow in full glory only during monsoons in the catchment area in hills. River Description One such river is Ghaggar. It originates in the village of Dagshai in the Shivalik Hills of Himachal Pradesh at an elevation of 1,927 metres (6,322 ft) above mean sea level and flows through Punjab and Haryana states into Rajasthan just southwest… Read More »Ghaggar River: The Lost Glory

Mindless Mass Shootings of Birds in the Pre-independent India

Koeladeo refers to another name of lord Shiva. Koeladeo National Park is on the world heritage list of UNESCO. It is located in the State of Rajasthan of India. It is an important wintering ground of Palaearctic migratory waterfowl and is renowned for its large congregation of non-migratory resident breeding birds. Due to its strategic locations migratory water birds congregate here from different part of the world. Some 375 bird species and a diverse array of other life forms have been recorded in this mosaic of grasslands, woodlands, woodland swamps and wetlands of just 2,873 hectare. It owes its existence due… Read More »Mindless Mass Shootings of Birds in the Pre-independent India

Freak Weather

I remember when we were young in late fifties and sixties, weather transitions were fairly uniform. The farmers whose hard work can turn to dust till the crops are harvested and safely brought home, were fairly confident about weather. We saw only poor monsoons once in a while and crops failing badly and food scarcity. In those days farming was dependent on the blessings of nature especially for water. The variety of crops and food items was not much. Only native seeds were used and often mixed crops were raised. For example, wheat alongwith sprinkle of barley or mustard. Only… Read More »Freak Weather