Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Heritage structures pose threat for people who come to witness dasara


Thousands of people throng to watch the dasara jumboo savari. They throng on top of the old buildings to watch dasara procession, or climb trees which may be threat for their life. There are 23 heritage building in procession route of five kilo meters and four buildings are in very dilapidated conditions. According to the heritage expert committee members Freemanson Hall (1894), Bojaiah and Shankar Shetty (1920), Cava (1913), CADA (1921), and might pose a threat for the people who come to witness dasara.

Though majority of the buildings appear strong in exterior, the interior of the buildings are in bad condition due to water seepage, lack of maintenance because of infrequent white wash and maintenance.

'Steps to be taken to prevent people from climbing the heritage buildings, which are in dilapidated condition. A safety check of all the old buildings before dasara has to be done. With one and half months left for the world famous dasara procession, the assessment works have to be taken on war footing to maintain the buildings, says citizen Ravindra Kumar.

'By maintaining the heritage structures in well conditions more tourists can be attracted. Cracks can be found in several heritage structures. Even no efforts are being made to paint the heritage structures and give minimum maintenance, adds Maharani College Student Geetha.

Heritage Department in-charge Commissioner Gavi Siddaiah said that instruction have been given to the concerned departments to maintain the heritage buildings, and a letter to District Administration seeking to construct the proposed new building of Devaraj Market retaining the heritage structure. 

Mysuru to lose its heritage tag if further neglected

Mysuru city known world wide for its heritage structures and buildings will lose its heritage tag? If one keenly notice the negligence of government the answer is yes. As many as 365 heritage building were identified by the Heritage building experts committee in 2011-12. Of which 201 were declared officially by the government as heritage structure, but no measures have been chalked out for their conservation.  

The sad part is one heritage building is demolished every month erasing the memory of heritage city. Its estimated that around 60 heritage buildings have been demolished in last five years, and unfortunately no persons have been appointed for the key posts of the heritage and archaeological department and even the post of conservation engineers is vacant from last several years.

Though Heritage Committee has been set up, no guidelines nor manual has been given. A proposal sent four years ago for conservations of heritage buildings has still remained a nightmare.
Heritage building experts committee member Echanuru Kumar said several heritage structures, including heritage private buildings are in large number in and around city. The government should first announce the 201 heritage structures and form a committee to maintain the buildings. Whereas, the behaviour of government appears gradually the department will be closed.

“Every month one heritage building is demolished. The properties owned by private establishments will be sold and demolished overnight, and next morning we can see only debris. There are several heritage buildings in Ramanuja Road, Agrahara, Ramavilas Road, KT Street, Sayyaji Road Road that have been demolished. With no permanent officers there is lot of problems in the heritage and archeology department, which needs to be addressed,' he added.

Senior citizens, sharing their views said that politicians for their interests are spoiling the image of heritage city Mysuru with out any vision. They say: 'Corporations should do a review and access the quality of the buildings, so that the heritage buildings can be protected.'

'The town hall which would have been used as another Rangayana, has been spoiled by taking up development works. Even after five years the works have not been completed. Unscientific plannings, and development works in heritage structures marring the beauty of the city. Apart from conducting heritage walk and educating people, there is need of measures to be taken to conserve the heritage buildings,' adds Raghavendra, who participates in heritage walk.

“There is a need to take a call on conserving the atleast existing heritage buildings. Officers for the Heritage and archaeological Department have to be posted first. In-charge post should not be given, and directors, commissioners should be appointed to conserve the heritage structures,” added Nagamani, school teacher.


Monday, August 29, 2016

No serious initiatives to curb PoP menace in cleanest city

Inspite of the wide publicity given to the public not to use Ganesha idols made of Plaster of Paris(PoP), the city is still getting a regular supply of such idols from Mumbai along with paper mache idols (prepared by crushing paper) from neighboring Tamil Nadu.

The other worrisome thing is that majority of the big idols of Ganesha are immersed in rivers (Cauvery, Kabini) at the nearest spot is at Sangama, Nanjangangud, and at ponds, canals.

Mysuru being awarded as the cleanest city in the country for two consecutive times, and it seems the concerned authorities have not taken it seriously for the serious environmental pollution such PoP idols may cause. The Mysuru City Corporation seems to have turned a blind eye, only by confiscating a couple of idols here and there.

City's environmental activists are angry over the attitude of the MCC and officials of pollution control board for not taking enough steps to curb the practice. They insist that a huge amount of fine should be collected from the retailers who sell such idols and a strict vigil should be maintained against such environmental violations. While some suggested construction temporary water tanks near Sangam for immersion of PoP idols and demanded to impose a ban on immersion of any type of idols in river bodies.

“If the officials act strictly we all can celebrate a green Ganesha festival. Without yielding to pressure from any quarters they should seize all such Pop Ganesha idols” says Jayaramaiah, Convenor of Save Kukkarahalli Campaign.
KSPCB Senior Environment Officer KM Lingaraju said that a week prior to festival big size idols of PoP flood in market, and following social issues it has become challenging to take action. 'Unlike clay, the PoP idols won't dissolve in water, and will be harm for water bodies and environment. We request people to avoid purchase of PoP idols and opt for clay idols.' While,

MCC Health Officer Nagaraj said that they will take a strict call this time and seize idols beginning Wednesday. 'There are nine environment officers for each zone, and strict instruction will be given to take action in their zone.'


Only cleaning roads, UGD should not become aim of Swatch Bharath. The environment should be protected, and people from all walks should come together for a change, added Uma, a retired science teacher. 

Artists turn environment activists

Artist Revanna, a resident of Kumbargeri said that on an average more than 2000 Ganesha idols were being sold about a decade ago, which has now come down to merely 70 idols.

'The good thing is those who place idols inside homes prefer clay idols and about 50 idols have created without paint. I also put efforts to educate the customers and convince them to purchase clay idols without paint, which gives me a satisfaction of protecting the environment,' he adds.

Another artist Shyam Sundar said that when people place order we request them to go for non-painted ganesha. There are people who get convinced and join hands for protection of environment. But, still there is a long way to go.

Livelihood affected

The livelihood of traditional clay idol makers has been severely affected. From the ancestors period these families have been engaged in making Ganesha idols and at present there are about 60 families in Mysuru depend on Ganesha making for livelihood.

To give a tough competition for PoP idols, they are also creating ganesha of different avatars, just to attract customers towards clay idols. In their small houses they manage to create idols. With ponds going dry getting clay is itself a big challenge for the ganesha makers, and marketing amidst the colourful wide variety of different hues of ganesha created of PoP and Paper Mache idols is very challenging.

'We work day and night to create idols. We wont use moulds, and entire family depend on making idols in this month. Its high time government should take a strict call to protect the tradition,' adds artist Dinesh.

Kumbargeri will be soon history

There were more than 180 families in Kumbargeri who were making Mysuru Style Ganesha idols. But, down the years the numbers have come down drastically and at present hardly 9 families are engaged in creating idols. With no business, most of them have sold the property giving way to commercial complex. The residents were also familiar for pot making, but now its a challenging to find the families with no demand.

They say with hike in prices of essential commodities and no income it has severely affected their livelihood. The parents are asking the present generation children to engage in other works to eke out for livelihood becuse of no demand for the clay idols. 

Sunday, August 28, 2016

No buyers for houses constructed down the years



The demand for houses, apartments constructed five years ago has gone up compared to the houses constructed down the years. The reason is the houses are constructed using M-Sand, with acute shortage of river sand in the region.

Majority of the builders have already switched over to construct houses using M Sand, people who are buying properties are not very keen to acquire them because of the perception that M-Sand used in the construction is mere stone dust and may not be strong enough to last longer. This has severely hit the real estate business as most builders agree.

Builders who were hitherto constructing posh houses, villas and apartments are unable to find buyers. They say the market has fallen miserably over the past three years as majority of the investors have turned to invest on sites rather than purchasing constructed houses, as they are built using M-Sand.

Jagadish from Builder Association of India said: 'People are not still not convinced that M Sand is much better than the river sand. The demand for houses has come down after construction took place using M-Sand. In spite of creating awareness through seminars and public talks there is a long way to go before people finally begin to accept M-sand. They are keen only to invest in sites.

“While the sand excavated from river beds here is going to Bengaluru, we in turn are getting river sand form Mengaluru which is infiltrated with salt from the nearby sea coast and is not suitable for construction as it quickens the rusting of iron rods when used as concrete. Such problems do not arise in M-Sand. The localities who are aware of the constructions in Mysuru which is done using M Sand refuse to buy. The government should take steps to make the locally excavated sand for the use of localites,” observed another builder Vishwanth.

“The real estate industry in Mysore has taken a severe beating, as there is a steep fall in the prices of real estate. Excavated sand are going to Bengaluru, and the sand available in black market is not affordable. There are many people who have postponed house construction works,” said Building contractor Muralidhar.

Another builder said that the inquires has fallen down and most of them who make the purchases of buildings, apartments are people from outside Karnataka. Realtor Prashanth said that people first inquire the year when the house was constructed, because if they were built before 2011 they are certain of having built using river sand. 'Non issuing of permits for sand loads, has led to increase in illegal sand mining. The sad part is river sand excavated is transported to Bengaluru, and the sand available in black market is not affordable,' he adds.

Bhat, resident of Sharadadevi nagar said with non availability of sand they have postponed the construction of their dream houses, and they are not convinced of M Sand. Though BAI has chalked out several measures to educate people about M Sand, still several flats are lying vacant in Mysuru. While a cubic feet of M Sand costs anywhere between Rs 45 to Rs 65 the river sand on the other hand is being sold for upto Rs 120 per cubic feet.

Livelihood affected

Livelihood of those engaged in construction field including truck drivers, construction workers are affected severely due to unavailability of sand. They curse the 'unscientific' sand policy that led to paucity of sand in district and the construction works have come to standstill from last three years.
Construction Workers Association President Siddegowda said: 'Large number of people have become jobless and the percentage of hiring labour is very less. Women labours are working at garments, and as house maids. Hardly we manage to get work for 2-3 days, and with the earned meager money its challenging to lead life, and look after family. The problems faced by us is explainable. The government should take a call and make the sand available for localities.'

Thousands of truck sold to scrap merchant

Nearly 2000 truck drivers engaged in transportation of sand are leading a miserable life. Without income to manage the family, they have sold the lorry, some lorries have been seized, while some have sold to scrap merchant.

According to Mysuru District Lorry Owners Association President Revanna more than 1350 sand lorries have dismantled and dumped in junk yards in a year and most of them have sold lorries, while some have left city in search of job, with failure to pay rent for lorry owners. Few of them have purchased auto while some have rented Ape truck, they have joined as private bus cleaners, and other odd jobs to earn of livelihood. 

District Construction Materials Suppliers Association Member Afroz said that with scarcity of sand thousands of families have come to streets. 'From last three years we are facing severe problems. Our dream to lead a happy life, as still remained unfulfilled.  

Friday, August 26, 2016

Working professionals, students create Ganesha idol

Working professionals and college students come together to make clay Ganesha ahead of Vinayaka Chaturthi festival just to continue the tradition carried on their forefathers. Some of them even have took a month's leave just to involve themselves in making the clay idols. While in some cases entire family members come together to make idols.

Swamy, a resident of Gowrishankar Nagar, who works for a monthly salary in a garment shop becomes the artist for two months preceding the Ganesha festival. Immediately after returning from work around 6.30pm, he starts working on the idols and continues to work till he retires to bed at around 2 am. He feels a profound sense of satisfaction while creating the idols.

Rajesh, a resident of Kumbar Koppalu, who is employed in a factory, makes himself free during this period to make idols. Over a two month period he makes on an average 40 clay Ganesha idols.

Student Anitha, resident of Gokulam says: 'From last ten years am helping my family in making Ganesha Idols. I sketch and colour the idols. I enjoy in giving finishing for the idols.'

Labour Problem

As in any other labour intensive works even makers of Ganesha idols are also facing shortage of man power with their businesses being severely affected. Ramanna who has been making idols for the past four decades is able to make only around 23 idols this year, while a decade ago he was able to make more than 400.

He says: 'Non availability of labour is a major problem. Some of those who hail from the traditional Ganesha making families, working in different factories have come to help me for a period of one month. This time have got three working professionals who join hands with me every four hours in the evening to create idols'.    

The sad part is apart from dearth of labours, all this the traditional makers are facing challenges in market with the sale of Plaster of Paris (PoP), which are multi-hued and also come in attractive shapes fetching good margins. The artist say in spite of several challenges they have decided not to give up making clay idols solely because of the joy and satisfaction they derive out of it.

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Royal Ganesha to make onlookers spellbound

Artist Shyam Sundar has created 'Royal Ganesha', who happens to be a third generation artist hails from a family that has been making clay Ganesh Idols for the royal family.
Artist Shyam, who comes out with rare and unique concepts every year, has created a replica of Jayachamarajendra Wadiyar with face of Ganesha this time. The Jayachamaraja Wadiyar Ganesha Idol standing at 4.5 feet height has come out quite naturally. It is adorned with the traditional Mysuru Peta along with Royal insignia of Ganaberunda. The idol has been made using 250 kg of clay with a wooden circle surrounding to the Idol.

Artist Shyam Sundar says: 'One of the most memorable event this year in Mysuru was the inauguration of the statue of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar at the Hardinge Circle. I wanted to connect it with the history of Mysuru and create Ganapa Wadiyar statue. Residents of Alanahalli have already booked the idol.'

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Though its challenging, am confident I will succeed, says Sanappa


“Just like my father, I take care of the Arjuna and treat him as my family member.”


With the demise of his father Dodda Masthi, the responsibility of riding Arjuna elephant, which carries 750kg golden howdah has now fallen on shoulder 32-year-old Sannappa alias Mahesh, who belongs to Jeenu Kuruba community.

A 4th standard drop out appears to be little nervous to handle Arjuna. He states that the assigned task is bit a challenging for his experience, whereas he is full of confidence that he will succeed.
Sanappa who was taking care of Arjuna along with his father from last 12 years, says during dasara he used to take the elephant for practice on procession route, and only on Jumboo Savari day his father used to handle.

“This year I will handle the task, and am full confident that Arjuna will be obedient to me, and listens to my commands. I have the confidence in the next one month I can get much closer to him, and develop a strong bondage. Just like my father, I take care of the Arjuna and treat him as my family member,” he added.

“The elephant gets easily anger, moody, rude and some times arrogant. He gets irritated when people wander around him. He was listening to my father commands very well. Arjun was upset for some days when my father died, and refused to have food. He has the same bondage feeling with me, which cant be explained, whereas I feel it,” he adds.

Forest officials said: 'Arjuna elephant has developed a good relationship with Sannappa, and family members down the years. He listens to the commands of trainees, and Sanappa has the capacity to manage Arjuna. Still there is more than one and half months for dasara procession, and we watch the behaviour and bondage between them.'  

Dodda Masthi had three sons, of which Sannappa is a middle one. Sannappa, with three daughters, two sons is leading a happy life at Balle Elephant Camp. He is working on temporary basis for Rs 9,000 and has a hope this year his job will be confirmed and will get salary of about Rs 16,000.
 

Friday, August 19, 2016

These people want to change the scenario of their ward


Kumbarakoppal which has emerged as the best ward in the country for implementing zero waste management, now to achieve comprehensive improvement in health, education, and economic status of its residents.
A group of people have come together and have formed 'Abhyudhaya Abhiyan' (On the path of development) to change the scenario of the ward for better through collective efforts.

With the population around 25,000, the residents want to make Kumbarakoppal (Ward 28) a model ward in the country which is not only free of hunger and communicable diseases, but also keeping it environment friendly. 'Eco Clubs' have been set up in all the six schools and in the 12 booths where people are motivated to plant trees, keep the roads and storm water drains clean along with several other initiatives towards green concepts.

It has been made mandatory to grow and nurture a plant in every household in the locality. For those who do not have place, pots are distributed with medicinal plants. They are also informed about the various health benefits of medicinal plants thereby working towards constructing a healthier society.

To inculcate green culture amongst the youth, children are motivated
to plant a sapling and water them daily in their school premises, and surrounding areas, so that green cover of the ward increases further. Yoga, Meditation, Prakruthik Chikitsa are thought to provide easy access to quality health care, and thereby contributing for the overall development of the ward. Even measures have been taken to address unemployment, and enroll every child to school.

Septuagenarian Jayarama says: 'If everything goes as per the plan, Kumbarakoppal will become model for other wards. To imbibe harmony and develop good relationship amongst people, it has been made compulsory for the people to take part in religious activities at least once every year. I have been living here for the past four decades but have witnessed lot of changes in the last 12 years.'

Resident Sarala said: 'We have taken a big step to bring change. We are more enthusiased to take up new programmes and keep our ward clean and thereby motivate others to practice the same. Already, delegates from 12 foreign countries have visited the Zero waste management unit, and have studied about treating waste, which is a matter of proud. We want to make our ward further clean, and become model for country.'
Prakash, teacher of a government school in the ward said: 'There are six schools in the ward, and saplings have been planted. Children are informed about the importance of nurturing trees, and they are enthusiastic watching the growth of the plant, and watering them daily.'
Brain child of the programmes, and Abhyudhaya Abhiyan Patron former MLC D Madegowda said that already Kumbarakoppal has made a great difference compared to other wards with treating of wastes at source. Now we are concentrating on overall comprehensive development of the ward, through community participation and we hope we get a good result in couple of years, he added.

'Nearly 75 per cent of the waste is treated at source, and about 60 per cent of the households segregate waste at source. Over the decade we have achieved 75 per cent success in segregation of waste at source and on an average 35-40 tonnes of processed wet waste is sold to farmers every month as manure while dry waste is sent for recycling. On an average Rs 20,000 is earned through Solid Waste Management and the money is used to give wages for to the workers maintaining unit.'

'Women are assigned to visit household and educate people about important of waste segregation. The waste sent from our ward to landfills is very less. But there is still a lot to achieve and there is a long way to go,' he added.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

This musical troupe families go to places to eke out a living


Riding a Bajaj M80 two wheeler with luggage tied to the carriage and with wife, children seated at the front they start their journey to tour the State to entertain people all with the sole purpose of earning a livelihood.

Nearly 250 families living in the slums of Ekalavya Nagar eke out their livelihood by staging street plays. They drive for miles together, halt at different locations across state, including borders of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and perform on the streets to earn a meager sum of Rs 5 to Rs 10 given by the audience.

Even pregnant women are part of this tour. Hardly mothers rest for 20 days after delivery, and start off their journey along with new born babies in their husband's two-wheeler. There are instances where women have given birth to babies while on tour, and have returned back safely. Children less than four years and some kids who are school drop outs also accompany the tour.
Carrying a mini orchestra set along with loud speakers, banners and make up kit, they start their journey early in the morning. They stop by ponds and lakes along the way to have bath and cook food on the kerosene stoves and vessels which they also carry. They manage to accommodate three elders and two kids in each two wheeler. An average each family earn around 20,000 to 25,000 every year excluding expenditure.

Their parents and grandparents were performing puppet show touring across cities. With the changing times they stage plays on subjects of social issues or simply perform a dance to a recorded song, or just sing and deliver funny dialogues. They even perform on women and child related issues, folk songs, devotional songs, mythological and historical plays. Even musical night programme are staged. In all, they try to give total entertainment for the audience. Whereas, they do want their wards to continue the profession and want to provide good education for children. The sad part is they are not entitled for any social benefits and do not get old age pension or honorarium as for other artistes.

Muniyamma, a nonagenarian who plays harmonium on her 150 year old instrument says: 'I play harmonium and sing both theater and movie songs. I have toured all states and learnt their tradition and culture. As there is no savings we wont think of what happens tomorrow. I have nine children and 56 grand children. They too are following the tradition, as we don't know any other job.'

'Plays on dowry-sexual harassment, farmers plight, problems of drinking and smoking receive lot of applause. Apart from staging street plays we don't know any other skill. We put steps for Dr Rajkumar, Ambareesh, Mohammad Rafi, Vishnuvardhan and other actor songs. Though we enroll our wards to schools, some of them are not interested in education,' adds 60-year-old Subamma.

'We perform during night. Whenever it rains or if there is a power failure we cancel the show and go without any earnings. We sleep inside mantaps or in the corridors of Government buildings, temple premises and continue our journey early in the morning. Yearly once we get an opportunity to stage play in Dasara which is the most memorable,' adds Hanumanthappa.


Bajaj M80, an popular scotter in 1980s is still used by the people. Around 70 bikes can be found in the slums. Shivanna who rides the bike from last four decades says: 'The vehicle was gifted to me by my father. The vehicle is very strong and fuel consumption is very less. It gives a mileage of 60 kilo meters per liter, which is affordable. We have kept the bikes in good condition. Its easy to ride, very handy. Am using the bike for four decades, and no major repairs so far. We carry good number of load. The company upgraded the version and launched several other bikes in the later years, but we love this bike.'

Of the 550 families residing in the slum nearly 250 families earn their livelihood by touring on two wheelers. On an average around 70 families in the slum will always be on tour, while others stay behind and give performance at local places, adds Manjunath. 





Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Youth show interest to learn tooling copper, brass

 Quite a good number of youth are coming forward to learn this traditional craft of creating designs using thin sheet of soft metals which is being given a modern touch to make it attractive to the customers. 32-year-old KV Devaraj Achraya, a native of Kunigal, who creates artistic designs using sheets of copper, brass and silver is in city to teach this technique of craftsmanship to the interested artists.  

The workshop spanning ten days is being held at Geethanjali Center for Art in Kesare where interested artistes are being taught hands on how to create designs on brass sheets. Some of the objects taught by him other than creating faces of Gods and Goddesses include flower works, swan, dagger and spear and some modern designs.

The participants are taught the technique of creating designs on sheet metals first by embossing the drawings followed by denting, piercing, stamping and finally giving it a finishing touch by hammer and chisel.
 
Basavaraj Acharya who has come from Gadag to learn the art work said: 'The process of embossing the designs on a plain brass sheet and then bringing into a shape is really wonderful to learn. There is good demand for brass works in the market. Without giving up on the traditional methods being followed, I want to experiment with new designs which attracts today's youth.'

Housewife Divya Shree who has been learning this traditional craft says: 'Anyone with interest and dedication can learn the art works, from what ever education background they come from. There is a need to revive our ancient craft works as a result large number of youngsters have to be made aware about our traditional art and crafts works.'


Geethanjali says: 'This is a rare art form, popular in southern States such as Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. There is a good demand for temple works and also for masks of Goddesses. They can be polished, given colours and can be kept in house as a antique show piece.'  

Devaraj Acharya says: 'There is a good demand for modern works of brass. Most of them who buy these works use them for decorative purposes while few buy for temples and to worship in puja rooms. The foil being thick it is quite strong  and after several process it will get the final shape. It requires  three to four days to finish one fine craft work depending on the size, curves'.

“Compare to copper, most of them prefer for bronze works as its less expensive, soft, colour and embossing works will be very soft. The drawing has to be done very perfectly and embossing the impressions is not a easy task. The metal has to be handled carefully, and a fine finishing has to be given,” he adds.
 
'We have a roof now'

Artiste Kala and Somesh have exhibited photographes and few paintings at the under construction house in Basaveshwara Layout. Through their art works they have narrated the story of 'Brick, Pillar, and Shadows', which speaks about process of a construction.

Somesh, a free lance photographer has exhibited about 60 photographs and his wife about 10 paintings. Starting from the foundation laying to placing bricks, pillars, the pics have been exhibited. Somesh says the concept is fresh, and photographes they have exhibited the process of construction works. Kala who has designed sketch for the house, has painted few of architect buildings.
 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Four associates of forest brigand Veerappan released



Four associates of forest brigand Veerappan who were serving life sentence in City Central Jail were released here on Monday. Anburaj, Tupaki Siddan, Tangaraju, Appuswamy were convicted for abducting forest officers from Gundal Forest in 1998.

All the four are residents of Bhavani Taluk, Erode District in Tamil Nadu. They have undergone imprisonment for 18 years including two year remission, and were released based on their good conduct, on the occasion of Independence Day. They were convicted by Chamarajanagar fast track court in 2004.

Each of them have earned more than Rs 50,000 in prison and want to engage in agriculture activities, and start a new life. They have even plans to start a business in any of the skill development programmes training they have undergone.

Prison Authorities said: 'As per the rules they all are eligible, and no murder has took place in the abducting case. They were all obedient, law abiding and very co-operative. Based on their good conduct, they have been released. They have expressed desire to engage in business, and agriculture activities.'

37-year-old Anburaj, was arrested when he was 18 years. He learnt Kannada, English in Jail. He did BA, Diploma in Journalism, Panchayatraj Subject in correspondence from Karnataka State Open University. While others three dedicated themselves in weaving, preparing bakery products, and gardening activities.

Rangayana Theater Artist Hulagappa Kattimani formed a team 'Sankalpa' in 2006 and started provided theater training for jail inmates. It was there Anburaj developed interest in theater field, and has staged several theater plays with jail inmates under the banner of 'Jailnenda Jailege', (theater of jail birds).

While staging theater plays, he fell in love with woman jail inmate Revathi, who is also an convict of life imprisonment. The duo tied knot when they were out on parole and they have a child. Revathi was released six months ago on the occasion of Republic Day.

Anburaj who strongly believed theater is a powerful medium for transform dedicated himself in art field. He used to manage the entire theater troupe and he got an opportunity to work for an theater newspaper 'Rangavani', where he served as guest editor for one month. He had penned two stories on life of prisoners for the magazine one and half years ago.

Anburaj last year had stated that he was disgusted in life and wanted to end life. Whereas, down the years after engaging himself in theater field, he has seen dramatic changes in his life, and wants to achieve something in life. Expressing happiness over his release, he said he want to start a new life, and engages in theater field, or in agriculture activities.


Sunday, August 7, 2016

These Women have fulfilled dream by climbing Pir Panjal Himalayan range


Just a couple of months ago these women dreamt of climbing a peak which they never thought its possible. But after four months they have realised their dream by climbing 17,500 ft peak. A team of 20 people from Mysore, Bangalore, Gwalior, Mumbai and Farrukhabad join to climb the Pir Panjal Himalayan range in the ten day expedition starting from July 20 to July 30.

Of seven women took part in the expedition, only four could climb the peak, and the interesting fact is all the four are Mysoreans. All the women have done rigorous practice by walking 8 to 10 kms per everday day which has helped them to some extent.  


Housewife Veena who dared to come out of her house to have the adventure of climbing the peak said: 'Its my long cherish dream to climb the hill and have fulfilled. There is a sense of satisfaction and lot of memories for lifetime. The unforgettable panoramic view of Pir Panjal Himalayan range is still in my heart and with successful summit this expedition is a rare and unusual experience for me. The sound of an Avalanche falling on opposite mountains still scares me.'

Another trekker Vani said: 'It was a thrilling experience. Walking amidst nature was like walking in the heaven. The beauty of white peaks, scenic beauty of mountains and gurgling streams of rivers can never be forgotten. If possible will visit once again. Though the journey is very treasureous, than what I imagined.  Some of the women give up and they were stationed in the advanced base camp Lady leg. Both physical and mental strength is required to achieve, as if we sleep little we fall from the mountains.'

Varshika Gowda, first year engineering students said: 'The five-day trekking expedition in the range is unforgettable moment in my life. To climb with the gears was a marvelous experience. I enjoyed lot walking amidst lush green mountains, chirping sounds of birds, and was a delightful movement to watch the wild flowers atop peak.'  

Tiger Solanki said: 'Amidst torrential rains, cloudy atmosphere, falling stone from the mountains, and slush on the roads were great experience. We faced lot of hardship as the area was prone to avalanche and crevasses and each individual has to keep his foot with calculation or else you may end up in side the crevasses or you may trigger avalanche.'
 
The team members were thought of skills like Koflach, crampons, Ice Axe,Rope management and skills to climbs the glaciers. Every mountaineer was hooked to the rope and all the safety Parameters were checked and the team started to gain the momentum, he added.

The team first reported at base camp Naggar. Started trek from Solang nala to Dhundi they reached Lourna by afternoon, which is at heigh of 10,000. Later they embarked for summit camp Lady Leg Advance Base camp. Further they climbed the peak, and have placed  national flag and expedition flag.

The program was jointly organised by International Academy of Mountaineering and Allied sports in association with Tiger Adventure Foundation and Himalayan Adventure and Trekking Centre (HATEC).      

Friday, August 5, 2016

They toil to keep city clean, but the locality they reside is neglected

With brooms in hand daily they sweep the streets of the city and clear garbage strewn around. Its because of them Mysuru has been awarded as the cleanest city in the country for two consecutive years. But the locality where these Pourakarmikas reside is not clean and they are deprived of all basic amenities.

The pourakarmikas toil to keep the city clean, whereas own living quarters are completely neglected. Nobody has been assigned to clean their colonies and remove the garbage which can often be found littered all over the area and causing mosquitoes to breed.

The residents are forced to throw garbage in open spaces as MCC has made city free of garbage containers. This apart, some slums do not have proper roads, access to clean drinking water, non functioning street lights and lack several other basic facilities. In all there are 62 declared slums and 14 undeclared slums in MCC limits. About 620 permanent pourakarmikas and 1645 work on contract basis.

Social Worker, Punith, who is working with slum dwellers said that the slums too need to be developed. It should begin by educating people residing here about cleanliness and hygiene. 'I have been working with these slum dwellers for the past two months and found to my surprise, there was not a single day when garbage collection was removed and cleaned,' he added.

MCC Pourakarmika Association President Mara said that 'Officials and elected reps think only of keeping the city clean and we are completely neglected. We go across city to clean garbage, and nobody has been assigned to clean our colonies. The garbage can often be found littered all over the area and causing mosquitoes to breed. MCC and corporators should take initiative and consider these slums as a regular part of their wards.'
Former Mayor Purushotham said that due to negligence of corporations and lack of interest shown by officials the garbage collection is not good. Even people have to be educated to keep their localities clean, he added. Mayor Bhyrappa said: 'Pourakrmikas should themselves set aside some time and clean their localities. Some of them dump the collected garbage in their localities, and after collecting valuables litter the waste. Its their duty to keep their localities clean.'

Slum dwellers of Gandhi Nagar, Shanthi Nagar, Kesare-Kuri Mandi, JP Nagar, Ekalavyanagar, Mandi Mohalla and Highway Circle allege that in spite of repeatedly bringing it to the notice of the officials to make arrangements for daily collection of garbage their pleas have fallen on deaf ears.

The pourakarmikas start their work quite early in the morning at 5.30 am and continue till 2 pm, during which they collect garbage from every household visiting door to door, sweep main thoroughfares, lanes and bylanes, address UGD complaints besides clear garbage at street corners.


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Transforming slums: Prerepana to bring fortune for downtrodden community

 The situation of seven slums in the city to witness a huge overhaul during the next five years. In order to improve the lives of people living in urban poor settlements and lead them towards sustainable development, a project named, Prerepana (Phase II) has been launched by Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement, funded by NR Foundation.

Critical needs of the slum dwellers will be resolved first by focussing on key social development indicators such as issues of health (Alcohol deaddicition), facilitating linkages for social entitlements, education, teaching them about cleanliness and hygiene, addressing legal issues, mobilising funds to improve physical, intellectual and emotional capabilities; and several others.

Through SHGs home makers will be provided with vocational training by means of which they can generate income. Drop out children will be enrolled back to schools, and youth will be motivated to continue higher education while availing of scholarships from MCC.

Karakushalanagar in Metagalli, Ekalavyanagara, Bharath Nagar, Kalyangiri at KSB Colony, Vande Matharam, Shivrathreshwara Nagara and Kesare Kurimandi slums have been selected for the project. Four committees have been formed in each slums consisting of five members who are residents of the respective slums. The estimated population of the chosen slums is around 14,800.
The community volunteers who have undergone training are educating slum dwellers and forming SHGs, spreading light on proper disposal of waste, keeping surroundings clean while slowly motivating them to attend deaddiction camps, which turns out to be the most challenging task.
Volunteer Tabrez says: 'The development is possible by improving the lives of slum. We have also joined hands for a cause, which brings happiness.'

'All these years we spent time only rolling beedi. Now we are learning tailoring and also making jewelery and paper bags which helps us to generate income. While interested youngsters are learning driving, and we hope these initiatives will transforms our lives from this downtrodden existence,' opines Shabeena, resident of Ekalavayanagar

SVYM Programme Cooridnator Punith said that making the people understand about the importance of education, cleanliness is very challenging, and they are focusing largely on empowerment of youth and women.

The programmes have commenced since April, and already committees have been set up. The project will concentrate on four slums of the Mysore city in the first year. Based on the first years’ experience and relevance observed in the selected slum areas, the project will be extended to other three slum areas of Mysore city in subsequent years. Rs 87 lakhs has been funded by NR Foundation for the cause. The first phase of programme was held a decade ago, aiming education, he added.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Watch 'Mysuru Nammoru, Nammavru' video to know about Mysuru

How many great individuals can you name who were born in Mysuru and have made carrier on this soil and have become globally famous personalities. Not sure how many, then don't miss to watch this video titled 'Mysuru Nammoru, Nammavru' with a tag line of 'Mysuru Anthem'.

The idea of making such a video came to Srinivas Kempachar, an MBA graduate who is into business. The video which runs for approximately 6 minutes covers not only great personalities who are associated with Mysuru and have made name in global map, but also heritage buildings and famous tourists spots, showcasing the tradition, culture of Mysuru alive.

He has made an attempt to introduce prominent figures like Sociologist MN Srinivas; Writers RK Narayan, Ananth Murthy, SL Bhyrappa, Kuvempu, Devanur Mahadev, Dejagow; renowned Sarod Player Rajeev Taranath, Poet Gopal Krishna Adiga, HY Sharada Prasad, Photojournalist TS Satyan, cartoonist RK Lakshman.

Royal family members, cricketer Javagal Srinath, Infosys founder Narayan Murthy and Sudhamurthy, Actors Darshan, Yash, Vishnuvardhan, Prabhudeva, KS Ashwath, Ambreesh, singer Vijaypraksh, musician Raghu Dixit, Yoga Pattabhi Jois, Engineer M Vishweshwaraiah, Sadwi paper launched by Thathaiah, CM Siddaramaiah and much more.

Chamundi hills, circles named after Wadiyars, Manassas gangothri, lakes, university, market, CFTRI, clock towers, zoo, race course, airport, golf course, KR Hospital, Suttur Mutt, Ganapathi Sachidananda Ashrama, Maharaja and Maharani's College, Yuvaraja College, D Devaraj Urs Road, lakes, and Mysuru geographical indications like Mysuru Malige, Mysuru Pak, Mysuru Veledele, Mysuru Silk, and several other things related to Mysuru have been shown.

He has taken nine months to pen lyrics and get it sung by singer Ravi Murur. He has collected all the photographs of the buildings, and has converted into video. In the poster created he has used objects that starts with the word Mysuru.

He says: 'Tourists visit Mysuru from nook and corner of the world and the video helps them give an idea to know about our city, it's history, culture, landmarks within a short span of 6 minutes.' He will be uploading the video on facebook, youtube and also circulating it on other social medias on Thursday. 

Student Dakshyani said that the video is informative and she came to know about Mysoreans who have made name in global maps. 

Monday, August 1, 2016

Attempt to promote reading habit among government staff

Department of Public Libraries to launch membership drive in district to promote reading habit among government staff and members of Sthree Shakthi Organisation and Youth Services.

There are over 213 various Departments in the District and a circular has been issued to all the departments asking them to become members within a month.
After the completion of the membership drive, officials will be asked to motivate beneficiaries and visitors to the department to have membership in library. The authorities are expecting about 80,000 staff to avail the membership in the first instance.

The Taluk level officials have been asked to submit copies concerning their departmental activities, schemes launched and related handbills, brochures. The same will be placed in all libraries at the concerned taluks gram panchayat libraries. With this beneficiaries of the scheme can visit the nearest library and avail more information.

Steps are being even taken to place copies of Government Orders (GOs), guidelines, rules and regulations pertaining to the various wings of government in libraries. This will benefit not just the general public about the Governments activities, but also Government staff to know about the happenings in their and other departments.
Presently there are around 1 lakh members in the District from both City Central Library and District Central Library, comprising 236 libraries in 235 gram panchayats; 26 city libraries, and 8 branches located in taluk level.
Library authorities say, with more number of officials visiting libraries, it becomes easier to elicit opinions and collect suggestions about possible lapses which can be easily implemented.

City Central Library Deputy Director B Manjunath said that this will not only promote reading habit among government employees but also helps to know details about the various schemes launched in different departments. It also increases members for the libraries.

Citing an example he said: “Handbooks and brochures of Agriculture Department is available only in the department. By keeping a copy of the same in all the libraries, everyone can know about the different Government schemes and guidelines that will help promote governance and improve transparency at the same time.”

Stating he has recommended Directorate of Libraries Department to extend the drive across state, he said a nominal membership fee of Rs 50 to Rs 100 (depends of cards they obtain) will be collected from each members, and it will be refunded if the official is transferred to another place.

Very soon city central library is going online

City Central Library to go high tech soon. Sitting at the drawing room, one can check the availability of the books without visiting the library. This apart, Bar coding system will be introduced at check out center, where issue of the books can be done quickly.

Using the software New Gen Lib around one lakh books in the library will be put online. The software provides information about the members subscribed to the library, magazines available, information on newspapers, and books available. All this information will be consolidated, any will be updated in the library website to be launched in another two month. With this, the reader going online can get the required information.

The books will be arranged similar on demographic basis. Using author name and titles of the books one can browse the book. In addition to that, the books can be browsed subject wise.

Touch Screen kiosks will be set up in the library, by touching the screen visitor can check the availability of the book. Location of the books, which shelf the books is placed can be found. Based on the subject of the book classification number will be given, which helps the readers to access easily.

After bringing the city central library on line, it will be inter link with other libraries in the city. In next year four more libraries automation will be taken up. With this, the people can easily access to which books available in which library, in which branch. Log in Id and password will be given for members.

Speaking to Express, Library DD Manjunath said that after completion of automation the details will be updated in the dedicated website for library to be launched before its centenary celebrations, that is on October 15.
“Through Library automation we can save the time of readers and staff. Its become easier to do stock verification, as earlier it was taking long time manually. Membership details, active members details can also be obtained,” he added.

He further added that Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) in special libraries, Universities will be adopted. Presently colon classification is being practiced.

Anna Arogya', a whatsapp group spreads light on traditional dishes

In today's world of fast pace people have become vulnerable to various life style diseases one among them being not consuming nutritious foods and lack on knowledge on traditional dishes.

In this regard, 'Anna Arogya', a whatsapp group, has been created to educate public about the importance of consuming traditional dishes including millets in the diet, which are highly nutritious and helps to over come several health ailments.

Daily new recipes will be posted in the group along with a brief explanation about their health benefits. Most of the people in urban areas who purchase millets are generally not aware how to prepare dishes out of them. So the recipes that are posted here motivates others to prepare, thereby reviving the traditional food knowledge to this modern society.

Delicious, nutritious and tasty traditional dishes recipes of Pulav, vegetable bath, chitranna, nutritious dosa using five types of millets, Paddus, Navane idli, chigali, sajje roti, ragi methi roti, and several other mouth watering yummy dishes will be uploaded. They are prepared using millet, pulses, vegetables, and other food grains. The dishes are said to be good for diabetic patients, heart patients and those suffering from various other health ailments.

There are dieticians, PhD scholars on food science, food technologists, Agriculture University employees and several others offer their views to the group about the health benefits by consuming the particular milelts, vegetables, greens, pulses. The messages discussed are being forward to several other groups thereby informing the people how rich was our traditional dishes, and how one can get rid of health issues.

NGO Sahaja Samrudha founder Krishna Prasad said that the intention of the group is to revive the traditional foods once prepared by our forefathers which are slowly vanishing from the dining table and there by making people to consume healthy food.

Seema, a member who posts most of the recipes in the group says: 'There is no need of taking vitamins, iron, calcium tablets. By changing food diet and consuming the millet we get all the mineral contest to the body, which boost our energy level and health. To know more about any the dishes people can call individually, which also helps to make new friends.' 

Traditional games improves family ties

It was a day of difference with delightful moments on Sunday. Grandparents were were seen teaching traditional games (desi games) to their grand children, the ones they played in their childhood. As the desi games are slowly been forgotten especially in these modern times with mobile phone video games and Play Stations, it was some what a surprise for those who took part in the desi games tournament held in city on Sunday.  
  
Grandparents were very happy to watch their children engage in some physical activity, instead of gluing  to mobiles and computers. While, children were equally happy as they learnt a new game and also made new friends from others schools.    

The initiative came from Chinthana balaga, which had organised a desi games tournament to introduce traditional games of our culture to the young minds. More than 200 people took part in the event held on Sunday and engaged themselves in playing pagade, alugulimane, kuntebele, kannatta (hitting pot closing eyes), cross bar, and several others.  

A grandmother named Nagalakshmi said that playing traditional games instills confidence among children and teaches them how to find solutions to the problems of life, improves self confidence and develops concentration which is much needed for today's generation. The Education Department should take a call and set aside at least one period in a week to teach and play these traditional games, she adds. 

Kushi, a Class III student said: 'I have been practicing Pagade game for the past one week just to take part in the competition. We can increase our intelligent quotient and mathematics will become easy if we engage in playing these sorts of games.' 

Another girl Niveditha said: 'I made new friends after attending this competition. Moreover we are having a great time with all family members playing the board games. The games helps to further develop harmony among family members, as we sit together to play and engage with each other in conversation.'

Programme organiser Venkataram Kashyap said: 'I feel a great sense of satisfaction for having reintroduced the traditional games to the future generation. Children are more attracted towards cricket than native games like Lagori, jootata, kuntobille which infuse them how to balance life, and infuse confidence. 

'There are nearly 470 desi games which has to revived and taught to the children. The moment to moment wins and losses in the play teaches children many things which bolsters  self-confidence to face any situation inspite of setbacks which are temporary. The IQ quotient of the children will increase. Earlier, in joint family system grandparents used to teach the games to the young generation, with present nuclear system the traditional games are slowly vanishing,' he opined. 

In all, the auditorium was filled with the chatting noise of people made new friends along with sounds of laughter and exclaim as they won and loss the games. Those who had walked in casually just to watch the event soon made friends by noon and started to play games. Quite a good number of women participants were present drawing a lot of attention. Children of all age groups enthusiastically took part in the event.   
   
eom/mys/rathna  

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Agriculture Scientist finds solution for papaya ringspot virus


Here comes the good news for papaya growers. Finally a problem that that had been plaguing Papaya cultivators has been tackled. The farmers who were fed up with the ringspot virus that affected the crop now can look forward to harvesting good fruits.

The efforts of KK Subramani, an Agriculture Scientist and an advisor in Department of Agriculture for GoI, who was involved in research on Papaya for the past seven years, to find a solution to the virus that afflicted the papaya plant has finally yielded fruits. 

Being an expert on genetics he has changed the character of the plants and has made the plants resistant to the disease and also made them grow healthier. To undertake experiments on a big scale in fields, he has distributed papaya seeds to farmers.  

After visiting several countries like Hawai, Japan, South Africa, Australia, Brazil and collecting Papaya seeds from there he worked out a solution on his own. Over the past seven years of his continuous research he has not only found a cure to make papaya plants rid of all diseases, but also enhanced the sweetness of the fruits, the inner colour and hardness. Another major breakthrough of his invention is that even after harvesting the crop it can be stored for 15 days naturally retaining the freshness.  Being an expert on genetics he has changed the character of the plants to increase the resistance of the plants.  


He says, around 1200 saplings can be planted in an acre of land, and a farmer can harvest nearly 80 to 100 tonnes in a span of two years. The papaya starts bearing fruit within a span of one year. In first year one plant gives 60 kg of fruits, while in second year 40 kg. Chamarajanagar Horticulture Deputy Director Nagaraj said that at present around an average of 35-40 tonne of fruits can be produced in an acre of land in a span of three years, and added farmers are badly affected with the ringspot virus the yield has come down. 


Agriculture Scientists Subramani displaying papaya infected with ringspot virus, and a healthy papaya plant grown under insect proof net at his agriculture land located at Bommuru Agrahara, Srirangapatna, Mandya district. 

“Papaya is not native of India. The farmers in country are importing seeds from a Taiwan based company. Over the past decade papaya growers were burning their fingers because of the Ring Spot virus which destroyed the crop. With severe drop in yield, farmers were helpless. Thus I decided to do research on Papaya. I found the technique where virus can be checked and farmers will get good yields. My research of seven years has borne fruit,” adds Subramani.


'There is a good demand for papaya because of the immense health benefits it has and papaya growers can have a good business if the virus attack is prevented. By cultivating the plants inside a simple insect proof net is the simple remedy to check the attack of virus, as the white flies which carries the virus cannot attack the plants. For an acre of land the net cost is around Rs 4 lakh and the the government provides huge subsidy for the crop, which motivates farmers to take up cultivation,' he added.

He has cultivated a special two acres of land just to give demo to the farmers. Here papaya plants afflicted with the virus attack are grown on one half while the other half contains the healthy plants protected by the net yielding good fruits. He wants to motivate farmers to once take up papaya cultivation, as huge subsidy is provided for women farmers by the government of India. He is also planning to take a patent for papaya seeds after getting feed back from the farmers.