19 Mar 2018

#346 Conserving the life saving liquid

Conserving the life saving liquid
Image result for water conservation
The most life saving liquid on this planet is water. Needless to say that without it, the possibility of life is completely a vague idea. Being a non-renewable resource, its depletion is a major concern for the mankind. A rapid rise in population has resulted in an over exploitation of it. Other causes of it can be global warming and unequal distribution of ground water. If we look at the distribution of water on Earth i.e Hydrosphere, we will find that Less than 3% of the water of Earth is freshwater, an amount that includes polar ice caps, glaciers, groundwater, surface water of rivers and freshwater lakes, and even atmospheric water. However, the amount of freshwater useable by people and other members of the biosphere is less than 0.7% of the total. This relatively small amount of available freshwater is recycled and purified by the action of processes within the hydrologic cycle.. All these reasons invite a need for conserving water.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) of the United Nations, a minimum requirement of water for a person is about 5 gal (20 l)per day. This is the minimum amount needed for activities like physiological rehydration, cooking, washing, and other subsistence requirements. This carries a significant risk of developing such water-borne diseases as cholera, dysentery, polio, or typhoid, which kill about 25 million people per year. Both conservation and sanitation are obvious necessities in meeting the huge demand for freshwater.

Of all the freshwater used directly by humans, agricultural irrigation accounts for about 70% of the total. Since irrigation consumes about 70% of the total water, an effective method of conservation of water can be checked by controlling the activities pertaining to irrigation. Water conservation can be defined as a careful and judicious use of water to prolong and better the supply of water. Even though it appears to be in limelight because of the problems mentioned above yet this concept is very old.

Several methods have been proposed in the direction of conserving water such as rain water harvesting, lining water delivery systems with concrete or other impervious materials to minimize loss by leaking during transport, and by using drip-irrigation systems to minimize losses by evaporation, Subsurface irrigationXeriscaping ;or the cultivation of plants requiring little water such as cacti, succulents, and shrubs of semi-desert habitat,desalinize seawater etc

Recently several schemes have been proposed in the direction of conserving water. One of those schemes is scheme Atal Bhujal Yojana (ABY) formulated by the Union Government to tackle ever-deepening crisis of depleting groundwater level. The objective of scheme is to recharge ground water and create sufficient water storage for agricultural purposes. It also focuses on revival of surface water bodies so that ground water level can be increased, especially in the rural areas. This scheme will help farmers who have been severly affected by the acute shortage of ground water for past several years. Central Ground water board (CGWB) has given permission to Indian Institute of Science (IISc) to develop ground water flow models and preparation of aquifer management plans for parts of Karnataka.
Image result for water conservation

We , as individuals, should take utmost care in personal sphere to prevent its misuse. We should try to use every drop of it judiciously. Instead of simply throwing away the water when left in the glass after drinking, we can use that to water plants.  Children should be taught not to waste them and use them when in need.We should prevent unnecessary leakage of water through taps and pipes and get them repaired. We should not leave the taps in an opened state when not being used. We should focus on collecting rain water by putting the containers below the sources of dripping water like roofs, terrace etc

Due to population expansion, the natural resources are depleting day by day and unfortunately water is one of them. We should take care to save every drop of this live saving liquid so that we don’t have to face the dearth of it or else the future of our next generation will be at peril.

Initiated by Livpure #CuttingPaani #IndiChange

 ©Swati Sarangi

#345 Book Review : As a man thinketh

As a man thinketh
Image result for as a man thinketh
Author: James Allen

Genre: Non-fiction

Format: E-book

File Size: 397KB

Star: 4.7/5 (Self)

Review: The book has been divided into seven chapters namely
1. Thought and character
2. Effect of thought on circumstances
3. Effect of thought in health and body
4. Thought and purpose
5. The thought factor in achievement
6. Visions and ideals
7. Serenity

Sharing some of the favourite lines from this book:
  A man is literally what he thinks, his character being the complete sum of all his thoughts.
  Act is the blossom of thought, and joy and suffering are its fruits; thus does a man garner in the sweet and bitter fruitage of his own husbandry.
Man is the master of thought, the moulder of character, and maker and shaper of condition, environment, and destiny.
Outer conditions of a person's life will always be found to be harmoniously related to his inner state.
  In the arrangement of his life there is no element of chance, but all is the result of a law which cannot err.
  Good thoughts and actions can never produce bad results; bad thoughts and actions can never produce good results.
Suffering is always the effect of wrong thought in some direction. It is an indication that the individual is out of harmony with himself, with the Law of his being
A man cannot directly choose his circumstances, but he can choose his thoughts, and so indirectly, yet surely, shape his circumstances.
The will to do springs from the knowledge that we can do. Doubt and fear are the great enemies of knowledge and he who encourages them, who does not slay them, thwarts himself at every step.
All that a man achieves and all that he fails to achieve is the direct result of his own thoughts.
He who would accomplish little must sacrifice little; he who would achieve much must sacrifice much; he who would attain highly must sacrifice greatly.
  Dream lofty dreams, and as you dream, so shall you become. Dreams are the seedlings of realities.
The calm man, having learned how to govern himself, knows how to adapt himself to others; and they, in turn, reverence his spiritual strength, and feel that they can learn of him and rely upon him. The strong, calm man is always loved and revered.
·        Self-control is strength; Right Thought is mastery; Calmness is power.

My experience:

It’s a small book consisting of 21 pages. Even though it’s concise as compared to other books in the field of non-fiction/self-improvement, it’s something to be treasured for life. It has to be read again and again to absorb the essence hidden in it which should be applied in life to enrich its quality. This book seems to have all answers to the questions that keep troubling me. I feel grateful to have found this book and will certainly look forward to refer it when in doubt.

©Swati Sarangi

17 Mar 2018

#344 Special Mention for Evion Contest

Read the winning post here

Thanks to the team Indiblogger.

16 Mar 2018

#343 Book Review :Coffee Date

Coffee Date

Author: Saravanan Kumar Murugan

Genre: Fiction

Format: Paperback

No. Of pages: 150

Star: 4.5/5 (Self)

Review: It’s a love story between an IT Techie named Siddhartha Abhimanyu, Sid and movie Director Isha starting over a cup of coffee. The entire story revolves around the backdrop of a corporate world with its own challenges, achievements, success, failure, pressure of meeting the deadline and emergency. Sid being a multifaceted person acts in a short movie directed by Isha with other co-actors and it becomes a great success in YouTube. Amidst all these, their relationship strengthens in due course of time over small fights or misconceptions. Sid decides to marry Isha before flying to USA for official work and does so in a surprise arrangement made by close friends. Life’s plans are not always in agreement with the plans made by us. Isha meets with an accident on a route to her home with her parents but a strong commitment to work sends Sid to USA and the news of Isha recovering from comma leads to a happy ending.

My experience- First of all, I should thank the author for sending me a signed copy of the book and my joy knew no bounds when the novel reached at my doorstep. The length of the individual chapters has been well maintained to engage the readers. Even though the narration is simple yet it is captivating for readers. It engages the readers to read it till the end. There’s a good connection between the chapters and the sequence of chapters has been well maintained.

Kudos to the author for his effort in bringing out this fiction to the market.

©Swati Sarangi

10 Mar 2018

#342 The Quite Letters

26 Feb 2018

#341 From my uncle's ink

From my uncle’s ink
Image result for ink

Sometimes I get surprised by my act of framing sentences as per the need of the context.  Needless to say, this quality of writing which has evolved over the time for me, is a consequence of inheritance. Yes, I can proudly claim that I inherit the writing abilities from many of my family members from paternal and maternal side. The article written below is the testimony of each and every word written above. 

Here, I’m presenting a piece of non-fictional write-up based on the experience of my maternal uncle, Er.Debabrata Sarangi, who’s currently working as Assistant Executive Engineer in the department of urban development under Puri Municipality , Government of Odisha. This piece has originally written in Odiya and it’s my humble attempt to translate the entire article in English by keeping intact the emotions and feelings associated with it.

The reason behind translating this piece is to make it accessible to non-Odiya readers. When my uncle sent me this handwritten article in Watsapp, I was so amazed by his writing style that I decided to translate it at that point of time itself.

Here it goes:

Greetings to my school
Image result for Puri Zilla School
Puri Zilla School , Image source:Google Images
Zilla School of Puri not only earned legend like Gopabandhu as student but also received five gems of Satya-ridden-age such as Acharya Harihar, Pandit Neelkantha, Godabarish and Kripasindhu. Madhusudan who is also regarded as Bhaktakavi has also been a product of this school. Once upon a time, Radhanatha Rao and Madhusudan Rao played the roles of teacher and student respectively. In next phase, Madhusudan Rao got appointed as third temporary teacher but before he could lend his contribution to this school, he got transferred to Cuttack and another Bengali man got appointed by then-Inspector Martin Sir to contribute.

In my childhood, while I was half paddling my father’s old cycle of Raleigh’s, I was attracted by two red coloured buildings of the city.  Out of those red coloured buildings, one was situated in front of the P.W.D office and the other one was that of Chandrasekhar College. My father always warned me not to paddle cycle alone in those areas which encompassed those red coloured buildings because one of those red coloured buildings was haunted whereas the other one was that of Zilla School , Puri. In reality, the so-called haunted house was that of telephone exchange and old Zilla School was held in the Puri college. From that day, the word Zilla School had subconsciously occupied my mind.   

After the completion of primary education in Police Line School, my father made my admission to Zilla School in the year 1976. I still remember how he indicated it to the factory of creating learned human beings. My father also enumerated the names of many students of that school who were renowned in different fields. I’m unable to recall all names that he said but all I can faintly remember are the names of Utkalamani, Acharya Harihar,Pandit Neelkantha, Godabarish, Kripasindhu,Kabibara,Proffesor Rajurao, then-chief secretary of the state Sudhanshu Bhushan Mishra; my heartfelt greetings to all of them.

This school was established in 1853 and was regarded as the best school of the state. Its location was close to railway station because of which it became the centre of attraction for common man as well as visitors. The school used to be officially made off during general election and its gigantic playground would turn out to be a place for conducting various activities associated with polling under the vast stretch of tent. We felt proud and happy by witnessing our school to be the host of such important activities. During Rath Yatra festival, the classrooms would turn out to be shelters for the police personnel who were assigned duties for smooth and peaceful conduct of activities. Seeing police personnel at a close proximity drove away feeling of aversion that once existed in our minds for them.

Many legends have spent their precious days of childhood in the premise of this school and teachers would always inspire the students to become administrators, professors, doctors and Engineers. My father was working as an Engineer in the department of government then and he had a wish that his son should at least be an Engineer. I started nurturing my endless dreams in the background of my teacher’s discipline, my father’s strictness and my mother’s selfless care. My mother had numerous expectations from me; she wanted her son to be an Engineer like his father and every person of Puri would respect him and would often say, “Like father like son”, his son would serve Lord Jagannatha by staying at Puri as his duty. No matter how much educated one becomes, how much renowned he grows to be, nothing can act as a greater fortune than serving his own homeland, Puri ,father took over the charges of water supply to construction of the road ; so would his son do, when he rode Raleigh cycle ,my son would ride car. Same thing happened. My mother’s dreams were converted to reality by me by the virtues that she implanted in me. It has been 1year and 8 months since my mother has left for heavenly abode, perhaps she saw ‘today’ as yesterday’s bright future.

I joined Puri Municipality as an Engineer in 1994. Wishes of my parents got fulfilled.  It was a government job and transferred posting was one of its parts. After working 12 years in Puri, I got promoted and transferred to Baripada , this saddened my mother. She, after wiping out her tears in her Saree, said, “The Jagannatha Temple of Baripada is also very old. The Ratha Yatra of that place is the second in our state. Lord Jagannatha has sent you there to implement your experience of Puri’s culture of working there.” I worked there successfully for 4 years and now have got transferred to Municipality of Bhubaneswar; the city of temples, capital of the state. My mother got overwhelmed by hearing this news (even when she didn’t understand the notion of Bhubaneswar being regarded as Smart City) because according to her, her son was on his path to success. I worked there for 3 years after which I got transferred to Puri again. This time, my mother’s happiness knew no bounds. She said cheerfully that the recent episode of transfer was the result of Lord Jagannath’s attraction.

She prayed God for her departure and sought his blessings for me. 8th Apr,2016 she left for a place never to return again. She returned back to the place from where she had emerged by leaving us many miles away. My father’s guidance and mother’s blessings became the sources of inspiration for me to serve my motherland. The happiness of helping friends, acquaintances and teachers is simply inexplicable. All these reasons sometimes compel me to think about the divine plan of Lord Jagannatha for providing me an opportunity to work for the betterment of the society as an Engineer.

The initiation of my journey certainly started with that legends-making-factory. Teachers like Ramachandra Panda, Brundaban Mishra, Debendra Mahapatra, Bholanath Dash, Bamana Charan Sahu, Harihara Samantarai, Prafulla Pattanaik, Sudhakar Mahapatra, Ramesh Chandra Mahapatra, Joginath Mohanty, Mrs. Shantilata Mohanty,Brajakishore Nayak,Prahalad Shatapathy, Jagannath Mishra and Dibakar Mishra used to get self satisfaction by manufacturing legends in that factory. Not only I but also my siblings and two nieces, in total 9 studied at Zilla School, Puri from class 6th to 11th. My niece, Sonali Mohapatra made us proud by securing 8th position in class 10th boards in state of Odisha. I doubt if number of members of a family as much as 9 in number have ever studied in same school! There’s not a single family in Puri who has not been acquainted with our identities. Someone or the other in every family has studied with any one of us. That legend-making-factory was certainly a unique one. Be it the teaching of language, yoga, drama or sport; every component of it was connected to each other through a chain of discipline. The success of this school has become possible because of the combined efforts of the makers; teachers and its stars; students. I feel proud to have got an opportunity to serve this divine place and the legend-making-factory.

Salutation to my Alma Mater!

Translated by
Swati Sarangi

23 Feb 2018

#340 Winner of Clean up cash contest at Indiblogger

11 Feb 2018

#339 The origin of my name

The origin of my name
Image result for star

Nomenclature is an important aspect of one’s identity. In fact, it’s something that we carry with ourselves apart from transient materialistic possessions. Primarily, we are identified from the crowd by the names which we have been given and then follow our actions or deeds. It is like the labels of our existence. In Indian culture which has emerged from a joint family system, it becomes an act of showering blessings from different relatives who come up with so many suggestions to display their love and affection for the newborns. Everyone has a story behind their names and I too have a story which I’m going to describe below.

As already mentioned in my earlier posts that I’ve been blessed to have come to this world with my twin sister. It is apparent that we must be having similar sounding names, to some extent it is correct. Initially it was decided by my family members to bestow with us the names of 3 lettered name(as per Hindi or Odiya) as Ankita and Arpita but later my paternal uncle ( whom I address as Kaka) chose Swati and Sweta to go well with the surname whose initial too begins with the letter ‘S’. Similarly, our nicknames were made to settle with ‘Miki’ and ‘Niki’. Interestingly, I being the elder one among the two, carry both the names (Swati and Miki) in higher order of alphabetical arrangement as per English dictionary than my sister. This is the trick that I mostly provide to others when they get confused with our names. Apart of these two names that primarily reflect our identities, there have been several derivatives of our nick names according to different family members as tokens of love and affection. This is the best thing about being in a joint family. The mere recollection of these names being addressed always brings a smile in my face and drives away all negativities.

It’s the most common practice to ask for the meaning of someone’s name during introduction and I have faced such questions. It was the first time in class 5th when I was enquired about the meaning of my name and all I know was that it was the name of a star in Indian Astrology. Swati, Nakshatra, star, forms one of the important member of the Nakshatra system in Indian Astrology which comprises of 27 stars representing sectors along ecliptic. Some of the general characteristics of someone having Swati Nakshatra are: sweet, soft spoken, virtuous, compassionate, mild, quiet natured, controller of passion and desires, skill in trade, merciful and charitable.

I was never convinced with the answer I had in my mind regarding the meaning of my name as I always thought it to be a reflection of some other name. Thanks to Google for the guidance in searching for the meaning of my name(Thanks to one of my contacts in Quora who inspired me to write something on it , this is how it came out to be); that’s what I found in one of the pages of Wikipedia; this name can be broken into ‘Su’+ ‘ati’ meaning ‘Great Goer’ or very beneficent. I wonder if the meaning of my name what puts the thought of be a philanthropist in my life! It was also name of one of the wives of lord Sun in Hindu epics. This name has one of its parts from the Goddess of knowledge and art, Saraswati.

Swati, seems to be the most common name, during my school and college days. I could find a bunch a girls sharing same name. When the name is same, the next thing that sets apart a person form the other having the same name is the surname.  My surname always seemed to be unique from the rest of my friends for having stayed away from my home state for several years.

Names give us identities that set us apart from others. Ever wondered when you share similar names and surname with someone else, what will be the criteria to decide the difference? The answer is our Karma; deeds.

Concluding this article with the following lines;
Am I the name that I carry
Or the deeds that I must worry?
Is this the appearance what defines me
Or I am a part of someone’s memory?
A question that baffles me always
Regarding my identity
Before retiring for the day
I keep questioning to myself
Who actually am I?

Swati Sarangi

#338 3rd interview in Kalaage

8 Feb 2018

#337 Pad and Period

Pad and Period

Every month a girl bears the agony of
A headache, nausea and stomach cramp
It is none other than menstruation,
To deal with it requires a lot of patience.

Release of hormone from pituitary gland
No fertilization of egg results in breakdown
Uterus lining; beginning of periods
Observed at the age of 12-15 years.

Usually, this cycle lasts for a week
Backed by severe abdominal pain and bloating
With the commencement of blood discharge
Then call for the urgent need of pads.

Pads of different brands come to rescue
Providing wide range of sizes and comfort
Preventing leakage from the side wall
To bestow girls a chance to be unstoppable.

The tale doesn’t end here
As a girl is susceptible to PMS as well
Which occurs prior to few days of period
With mood swings, depression, and fatigue.

Period is no more a taboo
And to be a girl isn’t a sin
Where she plays a multiple roles
From   sister, mother to caretaker
Society needs to empathize
With this situation of every girl
To take care of sanitary hygiene.

Need for awareness of sanitary hygiene
Pads should be within reach of every girl of this country
To cope up with the monthly cycle
Let no girl suffer this problem at all.

Sweta Sarangi