Fog that kills…


The national capital and its adjoining areas of Gurugram, Noida, Ghaziabad and Faridabad woke up early November morning to a layer of Black Fog, commonly known as ‘Smog’. The environment was so full of black carbon that it’s residents could hardly breathe.

As a regular prevention, many decided not to step out of their homes, however, the extent of smog reached a level that it could be felt coming inside the houses of some of the residents too.

For the past few days, light northwesterly winds from Punjab and Haryana have been blowing during the afternoon hours. This has been one of the main reasons for bringing in the pollutants caused by stubble that are burnt in the states of Punjab and Haryana. As the speeds of winds were reportedly less, these pollutants have settled in the lower levels of the atmosphere.


A high level of moisture in the air has trapped dust particles resulting in an atmosphere clouded with a thick layer of smog. Such a prolonged exposure to pollution causing particles can lead to various respiratory and heart diseases. Children and elders are the worst affected. Some schools are also on the verge of declaring holiday for some days until the hazard settles below certain level.

While the Supreme Court ban on crackers only managed to contain the spread of pollutants, available data shows that the peak levels of pollutants in Delhi on Diwali night were lower than the previous year, nonetheless, still breached the emergency point.

The Supreme Court ban on sale of firecrackers had turned controversial with a communal colour, some with a purpose defied the same. While officially crackers were not sold in Delhi following the ban imposed by the apex court on October 9, a flourishing black market ensured the steady supply of combustible products. The same was justified that the court order was not against bursting of crackers.

Spike in pollution

Analyses by several organisations such as The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and the Centre of Science and Environment (CSE) show that the pollution in the city, which was already at unhealthy levels before Diwali, had escalated to hazardous levels in certain pockets of the city and neighbouring areas.

However, the peak levels were lower than last year. According to air quality data collated by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), the PM 2.5 level hit a maximum of 422 µg/m3. Last year it had soared to 883 µg/m3.

The maximum average figures, however, remained the same at 440 µg/m3, according to data provided by the Delhi government, even as the minimum pollution levels were slightly low at 154 µg/m3, down from 180 µg/m3 last year Diwali.

The levels of most pollutants — carbon monoxide, oxides of nitrogen, PM10, and PM2.5 — were, however, lower than those recorded last year, despite being at the ‘hazardous’ point.

A shopkeeper and resident of Delhi was reportedly heard saying, that he had a small stock of crackers from the previous year but if people knew the shopkeepers they could get access in this season too. He further mentioned that he had procured some for his children a few days before Diwali. One of his neighbours, however said, that he had bought some from Muradabad, where his family stays.

A wholesale shop owner in Chandni Chowk stated that he hadn’t been able to sell even a single cracker in the past 12 days then. He had criticised the SC ban and said that most of our sales in the season happen around this period.

Whether the pollution curb can be emphasized by law or with stringent actions by government or by reforming certain decisions is only a matter of time. However, it is certain that the same cannot be achieved unless there is full co-operation by the residents, without flouting norms.

The only beneficiaries of this hazardous and alarming situation are the air purifying companies which are making the most of it.


Yoga is determined by life’s situations.

Everyone I know who is managing to make their way in the yoga profession is doing so not because they have mastered an abundance mentality that is allowing them to manifest their dreams. Almost always, being a yoga professional was not the original intent. They started out just wanting to practice and find themselves. Often, that process created changes in both behaviour and life situation. Sometimes those changes led to relationships that, in turn, meant taking on the role of being a yoga teacher. Being effective in business does require smart strategy, and teachers are wise to seek the counsel of others. But successful careers in yoga are a byproduct of practice more than an attainable goal.


As we continue to navigate through uncharted territories, likely facing a continuation of pressures and ongoing struggle, let us not kid ourselves that anyone has answers for anyone outside of themselves. And may each us of find a source of strength and fortitude from within, such that we might become less susceptible to manipulations and the tyranny by others of less than admirable persuasion. Our power lies most in our humanness. For if, or when, the systems fail and tragedy befalls, treating each other with honesty and transparency, in our hearts and minds and bodies, will surely be our only saving grace.

Justice Delayed, But Not Denied…

Have been in two minds whether to broach upon this sensitive issue, an issue which had kind of split my fellow Indians having difference of opinions, which is absolutely normal.

I was barely stepping into a double digit age in the year 1993 & yet have faint, but some horrific memories. I remember my mum working across a building, near Bombay Stock Exchange who had been sheer lucky to escape death which came and went in some fraction of moments. Some hawkers, security guards, restaurant owners & acquaintances whom she and her colleagues saw almost daily, were suddenly turned into ashes. At that age, when she narrated the events back home, I couldn’t understand the gravity of damage that had been caused to our city, specially when it was already struggling to get back to normal after the gruesome riots just 2-3 months before.

Did I lose any near or dear one? NO… Did I know anyone personally who lost their near or dear ones…. NO again…. Then why did I feel the pain for others? Why am I having some sense of closure post 06:30am IST today? And why am I penning down these issues at all when I can be busy with work, kids, trading money or just sitting with a cup of coffee on my balcony…

I felt aghast at a section of our society, namely, some Claim to Fame Human Rights Activists, Politicians (whose job is to oppose the government mechanically for everything), Actors turned politicians (trying to eye some votes in the upcoming elections), Lawyers (trying to get references by the word of “their own” mouth), etc. who have been on the news channels, twitter platform & other social media trying to justify their views on why the Mercy petition should have been considered. Mercy! Yes, Mercy, if that was the word used for a mastermind killing just a few hundreds. Surprisingly, none of the activists have denied the heinous crime committed & accepted, but I am still trying to figure out the meaning of “Mercy”…


Some strong arguments made by this hearty section were :

(1) Other countries have abolished death penalties, then why not India
My Counter : Other countries have accepted Gay/Lesbian Unions, has India? Unlike other countries, India is facing terror threat day in and day out, what is the message we want to give to the Terrorists? Come Kill us, yet Get Justice

(2) Every Human has a Right to Live & Die with Dignity
My Counter : Yes “Every Human”! So please stand up & fight for the Humans who turned to ashes in a fraction of a second and died without dignity – They were not only Saffron, but Green, Blue, Black, White, et al…. Basically they were Humans

(3) The Mercy petition was rejected because the accused was from a minority community
My Counter : I would request these people to read names of all other 10 convicts whose death sentence was converted to life. It is high time that we educated Indians stop giving colour to everything for our convenience

(4) The present government only believes in executing accused of Minorities
My Counter : Yes, some others accused in various cases are still on trial or yet to meet their fate of justice, but does this allow the accused to use this pretext to escape justice? Then why do we have any parameters laid down by law, all should have one common punishment

(5) Another strong argument laid down is the accused never got a fair trial & subsequently justice was not served to him
My Counter : 22 Long years — Which country allows any criminal such a fair trial with repeatedly challenging higher courts against death penalty. Ironically, in this country, whenever someone files a Petition, his agony is forgotten & it is all about the Rights of the Accused/Claimant

God forbid if we have another terror attack tomorrow, sadly, you will see the same section jumping on TV sets, pressuring the Government to bring the “Perpetrators to Justice”…

I may face some strong lash back from people who may differ from my points above, but I request them to allow me to use my Right to Expression with Dignity!

[This has reference to the capital punishment given to Yakub Memom for his conspiracy in Mumbai 1993 Bomb Blasts]


Should #PakistaniActors Work in #Bollywood Industry?

Quite a Mushkil Question this would be! And this question is not new for sure. For years the Pakistani artists have been performing not just in #Bollywood, but also been active in different Art Industries such as, Ghazals, Poetry, Book Writing and so on.

Over the past 21st century starting 2000s, we have had multiple artists from Pakistan who have forayed into the glam industry in India. Some of them who have achieved huge stardom are Adnan Sami, Ali Zafar, Fawad Khan, Atif Aslam, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, and many more. Of course, stalwarts like the Ghazal Singer, Ghulam Ali have existed since much before.

India & Pak Relations at Border – Relations between a Country emerging from a parent Country could never be great and there have been blow hot blow cold kind of relationship between both the countries since 1947. While the borders are peaceful, the sentiments onn both sides of the border are affectionate and warm towards the other. But naturally, if there have been infiltrations or border invasions or violation of seize firing, then the entire dynamics change on both sides, be it trade, artists, tourists and so on…

Latest Controversy of #PakArtists

a) People of India : While many producers have taken flak for encouraging #PakArtists over the talent of #IndianArtists, the latest in the line of fire was #KaranJohar, for casting the #PakArtist #FawadKhan in his recent released movie #ADHM. The huge lash back came with the backdrop of 17 Soldiers being killed in #URIATTACKS, where the people of India became extremely emotional and sentimental  with anguish towards their approach for #PakArtists. Rightly so, as our #IndianArmy soldiers who serve us with safety at the border had to lose their life, mainly in being caught unaware by the #PakTerrorists

b) #Bollywood : A strong support came from the corners of #Bollywood supporting #KaranJohar and raising their voice against the ban of his movie which starred a #PakArtist. In their opinion, an official Visa is issued by the #GOI on which any artist works in the country. Basis this visa, their contention has been, that they were in their full legal right to cast someone with a valid visa.

c) The 3rd Angle : Between the 2 sides, there emerged a cat named #MNS in Mumbai, which went on a different tangent altogether. They not only protested against the release but also threatened to burn any theatre which promoted the release.

Present Scenario : The Movie released [after #KaranJohar promising not to cast any #PakArtist again] and also entered the #100crore club successfully. Too much back and forth happened between #MNS chief Raj Thackeray and #KaranJohar, the media houses, radio channels all made moolah of the controversy and ultimately, many of the Indians who protested with heavy sentiments also enjoyed the movie with popcorn and salsa.

Should We Allow #PakArtists to Perform again : The Policy of the Government has to be clear with everything related to the people and trade across the border. With the love-hate relationship we share with each other, there could be several scenarios wherein the #GOI has approved visa or permissions for entry into the country, but with sudden border problem, everything gets stalled. A peculiar pattern to be noted with both UPA and the NDA governments is, that they themselves have never issued any restriction or ban but the producers have been threatened with Non-State Menaces. The stand of #GOI should be clear so as to avoid such sudden change in scenarios which can affect trade and commerce.



Delhi Celebrates Diwali like no one else, the #extravaganza, the #pomp the #style, the #noise, and so on. This year too it was so different.

With the 4 Day Diwali festival terminating on #1stNovember2016, people woke up next morning getting ready to hit the office after holidays. I opened my balcony and to my surprise, the sight beyond 10 meters had disappeared. Initially, I thought that it was fog and the winters had officially set in. But hold on, I was wrong. I couldn’t stand there for more than 5 minutes and suddenly started breathing a bit heavily and rubbing my eyes. I quickly ventured back into my home and started my normal work.

Pollution in Delhi, which spikes during winter, hit staggering new heights that week, with the city’s Air Quality Index (AQI) reaching 999. To provide a little context, the highest AQI in London is currently 66, in Beijing it is 288, and anything above 500 is considered “hazardous”.

While it has reached crisis point in recent weeks, bad air is nothing new in Delhi. According to the #WorldHealthOrganisation, it is the most polluted city in the world, with an average annual PM 2.5 concentration of 150. Three more Indian cities – Patna, Gwalior and Raipur – follow it in the rankings, while a further nine (Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Firozabad, Kanpur, Amritsar, Ludhiana, Allahabad, Agra and Khanna) are among the top 20.


The world’s #20mostpollutedcities

  1. Delhi, India
  2. Patna, India
  3. Gwalior, India
  4. Raipur, India
  5. Karachi, Pakistan
  6. Peshawar, Pakistan
  7. Rawalpindi, Pakistan
  8. Khoramabad, Iran
  9. Ahmedabad, India
  10. Firozabad, India
  11. Doha, Qatar
  12. Kanpur, India
  13. Amritsar, India
  14. Ludhiana, India
  15. Igdir, Turkey
  16. Naravangani, Bangladesh
  17. Allahabad, India
  18. Agra, India
  19. Khanna, India

The world’s #10mostpollutedcountries

  1. Pakistan
  2. Qatar
  3. Afghanistan
  4. Bangladesh
  5. Iran
  6. Egypt
  7. Mongolia
  8. UAE
  9. India
  10. Bahrain

If we read the list of Polluted countries, though India ranks 9th in a list of 10, we are in a category of not so developed countries. If large production and manufacturing giants like US, UK, Europe can take measures to curb pollution, it’s high time that the #GOI takes stern initiatives to ensure getting the pollution levels at least till the permissible cut off.




WHAT DOES A GRADUATE WANT? : Yes, you read it right. It’s a whole new world of Work Life we are heading towards. With the younger generation wanting instant gratification, exploring new avenues daily, wanting to be their own bosses having entrepreneur instincts, extremely creative and moving with times, Technology is the Key Word that keeps them going.

The Youth today does not really need to have graduated from a Technical Background, to procure success in the Digital World, that’s the kind of Power a Digital Platform allows many young kids today.

THE PLATFORM : The Digital World or more commonly known as the Social Media Platform, not just allows you to market your product/service digitally with maximum outreach, but opens up multiple avenues both on professional and personal fronts. The Social Media field is like a new born baby, which started hoping and eventually sprinting in last 5-6 years. Though it is very difficult to actually summarise the growth of this virtual world since a new technology to connect is developing almost every 15-30 days.

CAREER PROSPECTS : What are the Career Prospects after pursuing Social Media Studies? Every Organization, Corporate, NGO, Political Party, Brands of Products or Individuals, and almost everything that SELLS have Social Media Platforms. While the Traditional Print Medium is there to exist in a dynamic country like ours, the online platforms are slowly killing the any communication medium which comes with a time lag.

My Take : Social Media is surely here to stay, and innovate itself by each passing year. A Great Upward Looking Career Option for any student wanting to become a Media Professional.