Views and opinions expressed in this blog page are solely the personal expression of the writer and is never intended to disgrace any individual, religions, culture, organization and so on.Any unintentional defamation caused would be highly regretted. And since English is not his mother tongue, he is bound to make grammatical and structural mistakes. Hence errors as such are regretted and comments and suggestions are duly welcomed for further improvement as the author strongly believes that there is no end to learning in life.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Final Days at Vizag

Examinations were conducted at a stretch and it was over exactly within a week's time. There wasn't any break in between but it was a normal examination schedule, nothing to be surprised as this was kind of practice which was in place in Geography Department, Andhra University ever since first semester examination. The only surprising thing was our first year friends arranged us Departmental farewell after our theory examinations were over and the following day we had our practical examination. In the farewell invitation the time the program was scheduled at 4:00 PM (IST), I went two hours later at 6:00PM  where I was still ahead of the hosts which indeed embarrassed me. The program started at 7:30 PM only and continued for next three hours or so. Nevertheless, other than the timing which is a trend in Vizag, everything were superb and the dinner of all, was a grand one.

The examinations were over on the 26th of April. The following few more days were too hectic with the clearances (No Due Certificates) where we had to run from one office to another and wait for hours to get sign from that single person. The system which is in place in Andhra University is that the students have to write application to every person such as International Students Adviser, Chief Warden, Principal  and Registrar of the University to get No Due Certificates (Clearance Certificates) despite the fact that there is a standard form where they can straight away sign if one doesn't have dues. In a way I felt that this procedures (to write and application to all the individuals) was kind of harassment to the students. From Library we got our clearances upon surrendering all the four library cards to the librarian without having to write an application.After getting clearance from Library, along with application for No Due Certificates we had to go to International Students Advisor.  Then I went to my Department to get signed from Head of Department.

Next, again along with another application I proceeded  to Psychology department to get sign from Chief Warden  (who is also HOD for Psychology Department) for No Due certificates and Reimbursement of our Hostel Security Deposit (to most of the hostlers including me, the warden was new for many met him while seeking  clearance only as he never visited the two international students hostels. If it was not in his office, we would not have recognised that he is our chief warden). After getting golden signature from chief warden I had to rush to International Students Hostel, South Campus(His office is actually here together with Manager's office but we never saw him in his office but at least his stamped is kept here which makes students to run here) to get it stamped

There, we were told by some mates that we were required to write application to Registrar of the University to issue us No Due Certificate and Transfer Certificates. The application again required  forwarding signatures from Head of Concerned Department, Principal of concerned College and from Adviser,  International Students Affairs and as such  we had to again rush back to Department to get signed by HOD, Advisor and then from Principal. This time though we got sign from HOD we had to wait for hours to get signed by International Students Advisor as he was not there. He in fact makes his availability during lunch break of others and this made us to skip our lunch as well. Even to get sign from Principal wasn't any different story. In fact our work got struck here for the maximum as when Principal was available, the clerks were away and just vice-versa. The clerk collected the applications and other forms and asked us to come next day (Saturday, April 28) at 02:00PM only to let us know that there wasn't any progress in our work. She had unnecessarily deferred the work here for actually first we were supposed to get clearances from C-I Section which deals with the admission fees and tuition fees of foreign students. It was only in the evening that she sent us to C-I section. Here,  the person dealing with the clearances asked us to come at 11:30 AM Monday to collect our clearances which were kept ready as we were told. Finally we again went to Principal's office to get the No Due certificates and Transfer Certificates after getting clearances from all. The same lady who intentionally or unintentionally deferred our clearances was dealing with TC and No Due Certificate in Principal's office. She asked us to come and collect after 2:30 PM but irritatingly she didn't at all turn in the office in the afternoon. It was only the following day (May 1) towards noon that our No Dues and Transfer Certificates were ready. 

Had all these responsible people been in their offices, had they followed the standard format, had they respected the feelings and sentiments of other individuals we would not have taken these many days to get the clearances. Nevertheless, I and my friends were not the only ones. Every one faced the same hindrances in getting the work done faster. After all this is INDIA and only if every concerned individual were conscious of other's precious time, consideration would have taken and services would have been rendered at an expected time. 

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Where were they until now?

The idea to get the Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) bank of all the men who studied in Sherubtse College in the last 25 years as demanded by the Women Activists  (http://www.bhutanobserver.bt/women-activists-call-tough-action-wild-planters/) to the government  is interesting as the legitimate biological fathers of the illegitimate children can be traced. But to me as an individual I find more negative impacts over the plus points as follows:
1. Firstly, if ever the DNA bank of those men who studied in Sherubtse College (batches from 1987 onwards) has to be maintained it will incur huge loss to the government's exchequer. Is Bhutan technologically equipped to test the DNA? DNA of thousands of men has to be sent abroad for analysis which will lead to drain of country's economy. We have to keep in mind that Bhutan's economic development largely depends upon foreign aids, grants and loans. One must keep in mind that there are some larger issues which require prioritization.

2.Isn't the demonstration and the marches against our culture? The demonstrations will cause chaos in the society like it does elsewhere in the world. Aren't this going to be an ignition to a tranquil and innocent to become a chaotic society?

3. After the DNA is tested, what's next? Rather than finding solution, it will cause social  problems and  problem among the family. Families may get separated and won't this lead to devastation of another families?

4. What would be the reaction if any individual doesn't agree to get his DNA tested? Will every individual be put behind bars for not cooperating for the DNA test? Won't it be an encroachment over one's fundamental right as an individual?  Let's say, an individual's DNA is tested forcefully against his will. What will be the the cost if he is not proven to be among the culprits? 

5. "prime minister (former zonal administrator of the east), education minister (former vice principal of Sherubtse College) and health minister (former principal of Sherubtse College). She said they will be held responsible for a large number of illegitimate children in the east if the government failed to come up with an immediate solution".To an apolitical person like me I feel its more or less of political in nature. Why corner only three persons? Does it mean that Prime Minister as the eastern zonal administrator, Health Minister as Principal and education Minister as Vice Principal encouraged the students to impregnate all the women who  gave birth to illegitimate children? Why is it so that only these three persons will be held responsible for it was none of their business. 

6. Why should the gate, a non-living thing get stoned for no mistake of its own if the government fails to decide on the issue. What harm has the gate done?Does it mean that the gate was so porous which led to the impregnation of the ladies in the localities? Won't it be considered an act of vandalism? 

To me where lies the need to get the DNA bank of all men for past twenty five years when the women can name the culprits as quoted in the media" They [women victims] can even tell the names of those wild planters and some of them even tried the second harvest.”   It would be far more economical and logical to get the DNA tests done for those persons the victims can name after tracing their details. And if the accused is not proven to be responsible won't the victim be liable to face the consequences of defamation of the accused? It is good that plight of tge ladies who bear the brunt of mothering the illegitimate children will be looked into, yet (This will be the very beginning of the movement for the liberation of women") I am afraid that this will lead to series of movements (strikes) in future which will be detrimental to the functioning of the state. So one must not be a copy cat by calling for movements like in other countries. The movements (strikes) will be a mere loss of time and resources which could be invested in other productive ways. Another question that arises in mind is, where were they until now? Why didn't they do it earlier?  Nevertheless, its better late than never but rather than protesting and making illogical demands it would better if awareness campaigns on the existences of strict regulations of rape and obligations the man has to fulfil for impregnating women with an illegitimate children and so on are made. 

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Trip to Thotla Konda

Today along with Mr. Venkatesh Suggu and Mr. Tshewang, I have gone for  a trip to Thotla Konda, a ruined Buddhist site near Visakhapatnam which over looks the Bay of Bengal Sea.In  Telugu  Thotla is Trough and Konda 'Hill' thereby meaning a hill of troughs. It lies 128 meters above Mean Sea Level. Several rectangular rock-cut troughs are found which were considered to have been used for storing water and then consumed after treating with herbs. After the excavations were conducted by the Indian Navy during 1988-93, it is established that Hinayana Buddhist Complex existed here 2000 years ago. Following are some of the snapshots with a bit of description. 

 This is a gate towards the ruined Buddhist complex. 
 As the sign board reads, its the Maha Stupa. As per the guide who explained us, the height of the Stupa was 81 feet. It was one among the 500 stupas where the ashes of Lord Buddha are supposed to have been kept.
This is the top of the broken pillar which is supposed to be part of the main stupa (Maha Stupa)
This is believed to be the model built prior to the construction of the Maha Stupa and based on this model the Maha Stupa has been built.
This are the ruins of the U-shaped congregational hall. To its left were also seen the ruins of a 64 pillared congregational hall where the Sanghas (monks) used to gather for meditation and religious discourses.

The rock-cut trough which were used for water storage
This is one of the eleven stone wells (troughs) found nearby the Buddhist complex. Interestingly, its said that water in this well never dries up proving the point that its not just the rain water which fill it up but may have an underground source to it. It is also believed to have bee created by the senior disciples of Buddha as per what they saw in their vision during meditation and hence its considered holy. 
This trough appears like a bath trough but the guide explained that its here where the water stored in the larger troughs are being treated here by adding herbs and made consumable. 
This pond is believed to have been the bathing place for the Sanghas as there is a remnant of the footpath connecting this pond and the complex. 
The  broken remains of King Ashoka's Chakra which is believed to have been also the main part of the Maha Stupa.

Besides the above remnants, other ruins found in the complex includes the four rectangular rooms used for cooking and storing food, the dormitories for the Sanghas, circular meditation hall, and remnants of smaller stupas, the site where Buddha's footprint was placed for worship by the disciples and so on. The Buddhist complex and its influences has declined by the 3rd Century AD, due to rise of Hinduism and  the decline in the maritime trade according to what our guide mentioned. 

P.S: The guide was explaining in Telugu who seemed to have loads of information but communication was the main constraint. So Mr. Venkatesh acted as a translator to two of us.