Fury of Nature keeps India on tenterhooks

Photo by hitesh choudhary on Pexels.com

Even as Mother Nature plays angry, Indians continue to fight severe conditions even as the weatherman predicts more inclement weather in coming weeks

In the coming days, weather could be a cause of great distress in the country given inclement conditions are threatening to impact day to day life in most parts. Bad weather has been predicted in most parts of India and required steps are being taken so that the damage can be minimized.

In Bihar and Assam the situation remains grim with almost 59 lakh people in the grip of a flood like situation. While Bihar’s 13 districts are suffering, 46 lakh people live in fear of the after effects of floods. In Assam on the other hand, 28 districts have seen 26 lakh people suffer.  With the situation worsening the state government has had to call in the Army for rescue and relief operations. In Bihar alone over 67 people have lost their lives.

Assam’s flood hit areas have reached a point where basic drinking water facilities are crumbling. Most areas in the state have witnessed a failure of handpumps functioning properly. The 3181 villages of the 28 districts in the state have been facing the wrath of mother nature. 90,000 hectare agricultural land is submerged and this has further caused distress to 10 lakh animals.

Both the NDRF and SDRF has worked tirelessly to abate the damage caused by the natural disaster. A number of people have also started migrating from the state to safer havens. With relief coming in at a snail’s pace, locals have been angry. Sitamarhi is among one of the worst affected in Bihar. Make shift bamboo tents have for many become the resting place with concrete homes out of bounds. Some are forced to stay on highways, main roads, schools or even railway tracks. Road connectivity has been blocked in places like Shivhar, West Champaran, and Nepal. Each river flowing through Motihari is in spate. Things in Madhubani are no different. Flood fury has been visible in Kamla Balan, Kosi and other rivers.

Haryana’s Ambala, Kurukshetra, Sonipat, Jhajhar,Karnal and Yamunanangar districts too have seen life go off track. Neighbouring Punjab might see a chaotic situation over the next few days says the weatherman.  In several districts of Uttar Pradesh the rivers have been flowing above the danger mark. In most hilly zones which include Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Uttarakhand, the fears of landslides continue to loom large.

 In the hilly state of Uttarakhand, places like Dehradun, Haridwar, Nainital, Pitthoragarh and Udhhamsingh Nagar are on a 24 hour alert for fear of bad weather. Same has been the case with Madhya Pradesh. In Jammu and Kashmir the next six days will be critical, as rains might lash the state. In Rajasthan rains are awaited and in Jharkhand sunny days are still continuing. In most districts the weatherman has predicted medium rains over the next three to four days.

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कर वसूली पर प्रभावी कदम, देश को बेहतर भविष्य देगा मानते हैं विशेषज्ञ

लखनऊ चार्टर्ड अकाउंटेंट्स सोसाइटी के सानिध्य में गोमती नगर स्थित पर्यटन भवन में बजट 2019 – 20 की समीक्षा की गयी । बुद्धिजीवियों ने बजट के अच्छे बुरे पहलुओं पर मंथन किया और ये कहा की एक ओर जहाँ देश को लाभ होगा वहीं, कर भुगतान के परिपेक्ष में कुछ ठोस कदम उठाने की ज़रूरत है । 

जानकारों का कहना था की बजट कृषि क्षेत्र और मिड्ल इनकम ग्रूप के लिए ख़ासा लाभकारी होगा । परंतु जिस तरह कुछ बजट के प्रावधान लिखे गये हैं बजट दस्तावेज़ में वो सही नही है । इस बात पर सहमति ज़ाहिर की, प्रधान मुख्य आयुक्त, आएकर और DG आएकर (  इन्वेस्टिगेशन) उप और उत्तराखंड, प्रवीण कुमार ने ।

पूर्व अध्यक्ष, बॉमबे चार्टर्ड अकाउंटेंटस सोसाइटी, गौतम नायक, ने पर्यटन भवन के प्रांगण में बात करते हुए कहा ना केवल करदाता बल्कि जो कर वसूली से जुड़े हुए हैं उन सभी लोगों को पूर्णतः जानकारी होना चाहिए कर संबंधित मुद्दों पर । ऐसे युग में जब आए कर विभाग चीज़ों को ऑनलाइन देखे हुए है, तो क़ानून को और पारदर्शी बनाना ज़रूरी बन जाता है । नायक बताते हैं अक्सर होता क्या है की 2 फीसदी लोग जो क़ानून की आँख में धूल झोंकते हैं वो बच जाते हैं । उसी की जगह 98 फीसदी लोग ऐसे हैं जो इस काले खेल की भरपाई करते हैं। उनका मानना है जानकारी बढ़ाने के लिए देश व्यापी मुहीम की ज़रूरत है ।

बतौर चार्टर्ड अकाउंटेंट और मुंबई जैसे शहर में अपना काम कर रहे नायक, इस बात से पूरी तरह सहमत हैं की बजट ने बेनामी लेनदेन, कड़ी निगरानी और पिनल्टी के मामले में प्रभावी कदम उठाए हैं । पर उनका मानना है की बड़ी रकम की लेन देन पर नकेल कसना तब ज़रूरी है जब कर में गड़बड़ दिखाई पड़े । प्रॉपर्टी और बड़े हाउसिंग प्रॉजेक्ट्स की बात करें तो उन्हे ख़ासा फ़ायदा इस बात से होगा की अब कार्पेट एरिया लिमिट का दायरा बढ़ा दिया गया है ।

PSUs का निजीकरण के साथ साथ सिंगल ब्रांड रीटेल के लिए भी सरकार ने कुछ सराहनिय कदम उठाए हैं । नायक मानते हैं की रुपये और डॉलर के बेहतर सामंजस्य को कोई भी बजेट नज़र अंदाज़ नही कर सकता ।

जानकार ये भी मानते हैं की असलियत में कर जो मिलता है, वो अनुमानित कर कमाई से बहुत अलग है । जिसका सीधा सरोकार देश के ख़स्ता हाल व्यापारिक स्थिति से है ।

नायक ने बजेट से जुड़े कई ज़रूरी मुद्दों का ज़िक्र अपने वक्तव्य के द्वारा किया ।

उन्होने स्टार्टअप्स, बाइ बॅक डिस्ट्रिब्यूशन टॅक्स, बिज़्नेस से आने वाले आए, कॅपिटल गेन्स, लेनदेन पर छूट, चॅप्टर VIA डिडक्शन, CPSEs में निवेश, आल्टर्नेटिव इनवेस्टमेंट फंड्स, सूत और सेक्षन 89 के चलते कुछ ढिलाई पर अपनी बात रखी. उन्होने अपने आए को सही तरह से बताने के लिए लोगों को आगा किया, क्यूंकी अब कारवाई कड़ी होगी. काला धन जमाखोरों पे कसने वाले नकेल की भी बात उन्होने कही।

किसी भी कंपनी के बाइ बॅक को लेकर उन्होने कहा की हाल के दिनों में इन्फ़ोसयस और 11 अन्य संस्थाओं में ऐसे हलचल जारी हैं।

 उनका मानना है की बजेट दस्तावेज़ को थोड़ा और बेहतर तरीके से लिखा जाना चाहिए था। ख़ासकर शब्दावली पर ध्यान की ज़रूरत थी। उनका मानना था की दो दो बार PAN का जारी किया जाना लाभार्थी के लिए मुश्किल का कारण बन सकती है।

आंकड़ों का सहारा लेते हुए वह बताते हैं की कुल 1 से 2 पर सेंट ट्रस्ट्स अपने बजेट का पूरा ब्योरा खुल के देते हैं। पूरी तरह आयुक्त भी चीज़ों को अकेले के दम पे चला नही सकते। आगे कहते हैं की कोई भी संपूर्ण ज्ञान के ग्याता नही कहला सकते। हॉल फिलहाल आएकर के जानकार यही बोलते आए हैं की टॅक्स से बचते लोगों को अब चौकन्ना रहना होगा। सिस्टम को हर छोटी से छोटी गड़बड़ी से पूर्णतः अवगत रहना होगा और कर क़ानून में संशोधन निरंतर करना मील का पत्थर नही कहलाएगा.

गिरते हुए व्यापारिक गतिविधियों के मद्दे नज़र नायक मानते हैं की स्टार्टअप्स के लिए पिछले कुछ साल काफ़ी परेशानी के कारण रहे हैं।

आएकर के नियमों के सुचारू रूप से पालन हो इस पर प्रवीण कुमार, प्रधान मुख्य आयुक्त और DG आएकर ( इन्वेस्टिगेशन) उप और उत्तराखंड मानते हैं की इस साल का बजट बही खाता का पूरा ब्योरा देता है। एक ओर जहाँ मुद्रा पर खासा ध्यान है, वहीं लोगों को आएकर नियमों पर सचेत रहना होगा.” ।

कुमार मानते हैं की “कर को सही तरह से वसूला जाए इस पर देश को थोड़ा संजीदा होना पढ़ेगा। इसके लिए जानकारी हर तप्के तक पहुँचना बेहद ज़रूरी है।  सेक्षन 54, 55 और 115 इस दिशा में ज़रूरी कदम हैं। कर भुगतान ना करते हुए कई लोग लेनदेन करते रहते हैं, जिस पर करवाई अनिवार्य है ” ।

CA आर एल बाजपई, अध्यक्ष LACS, वक्ताओं का अभिनंदन करते हुए अपनी बात रखते हैं बजेट पर।  बाजपई कहते हैं ज़ाहिर तौर पर इस बार का बजट देश में एक अजीब जिज्ञासा जगा रही है। मिले जुले प्रतिक्रियाएं आ रही हैं इस बजट पर। मिड्ल क्लास  कारोबारी और कृषि से जुड़े लोगों ने ख़ासा चैन की साँस ली। उमीदें बढ़ी हैं की प्रदेश और केन्द्र में बेहतर ताल मेल बनेगा.”

With caste as underlining factor, Article 15 makes noises in an uneven world

The idea of Anubhav Sinha’s Article 15 is loosely based on the infamous Badaun gangrape and the various twists and turns the case sees over the course of the investigation. The film opens with a song—“Kahab to lagi jaaye dhak se” being rendered in a group where talk of disparities is foremost.

It speaks of how the Dalit community is having to bear the brunt of a deep wedge on castelines. The film is also about how the police are playing in the hands of highly placed people who would go to any extent to harm humankind, especially girls and stoke passions.

Murders, violence, lynching in West UP often referred to as the Wild Wild West has become the order of the day.

Entering the story with Bob Dylan’s iconic Blowing in the Wind, the film is a strong comment on how media and the police both crawl when asked to bend by the high and mighty. A murder most foul where it is suspected a gangrape has occurred, is causing terror in the minds of the people of Lalgaon.

People are tightlipped, meanwhile the cops are trying to hush up things so that the minister is away from harm’s way.

Even as the rape case starts to develop as a ghastly and heinous crime, newspapers and media are turning a blind eye.

 GDP news makes it to Page 1 but this story from a non descript village does not. Parallels are drawn between Nirbhaya and Lalgaon.

Question here is why does only the national capital make up a part of news agenda. FIRs take ages to lodge. The cops are lackadaissical. Concocted FIRs, half baked truth, false post mortems give the viewer reason to believe that a dangerous game is at play here.

The film makes a fleeting reference to Bhim Sena chief Chandrashekhar Azad and how the Hindutva card has often been a poll time rhetoric especially to garner votes.

The film also shows how the tension is kept simmering so that Brahmins and Dalits do not combine forces, since they are considered a lethal combine.

Dialogues like – We are Harijan, bahujan but not jan. Power ki alag hi jaat hoti hai and Us kitaab ki hi ye nahi chalne dete jiski shapath lete hain are indirect but important references to the Constitution of India which was shaped by the Father of the Constitution, Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar.

As a tough cop, Ayuhsmann Khurana is charged of being prejudiced towards caste, who notably raises the point of how a Dalit is not given a 3 rupee wage hike in daily wages for their caste affiliations.

As a CBI officer who takes over the case tries to act smart with the cop, pat comes the dialogue from Ayushmann – Delhi mein yes sir yes sir ki jagah no bolna chahiye zyada se zyada maar hi diye jayenge

 A film tailor made for Ayushmann after the actor wanted something on the lines of Mulk, the actor does justice with a not so run of the mill performance proving his class, beyond his chocolate hero image.

Ayushmann has an impact which is measured and natural cutting through the usual star-struck film culture with not many popular faces

The film revolves around the main character Ayan played by Ayushmann Khurana. Supporting character Nishad is equally captivating. Ayan as a character is also in some ways symbolic of the clear disconnect between the urban and rural milieu.

Isha Talwar as Aditi is good in parts. The writer Gaurav Solanki and filmmaker Anubhav Sinha address those who can dismiss caste talk. The core point in the discourse is – Sab barabar ho gaye to raja kaun banega?

The film stars Ayushmann Khurrana, Kumud Mishra, Manoj Pahwa, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Isha Talwar, Sayani Gupta, Ronjini Chakraborty, Nasser and Ashish Verma

A 130 minutes film it captures well the Una floggings and the Badaun gangrape.

Ayan’s friend Satyendra’s character remains vague and undetermined.

The tagline of the film states —“Farq bahut kar liya, ab farq laayenge.

With this film after outings like Mulk, Anubhav Sinha is finally back. Unlike Sairat and Dhadak, Article 15 drills the point hard.

Article 15 falls under Part III of the Constitution of India, dealing with fundamental rights of each citizen. It secures them from discrimination by the State on the basis of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any other.

In Badaun, two minors from Dalit Maurya community were kidnapped, gangraped and hanged from a tree in Badaun in May 2014. Something condemned strongly by even the United Nations.

All five key accused, including two cops are arrested. Politicians then called for a thorough probe, meanwhile a Special Investigation Team is formed to investigate the brutal killings. even as contradicting statements come in,

CBI drops charges against five accused – Pappu, Awadhesh and Urvesh Yadav (brothers) and constables Chhatrapal Yadav and Sarvesh Yadav. Later in October 2015, POCSO court rejects CBI closure report.

Shweta Basu Prasad in Tashkent Files is a reveting tribute to journalism

Each journalist must watch The Tashkent Files because following your conviction and sticking to your stand is not easy today

Tashkent Files is a clever attempt at paying homage to the legendary Lal Bahadur Shastri. It not just attempts decoding, even if flatly the historical facts behind the death of Shastri, but it also talks about how a journalist in today’s times stands for a certain conviction which is hard to demolish.

Shweta Basu Prasad as a journalist is frustrated. She has her job at stake with her boss giving her an ultimatum of performing or perishing. She has to prove herself at all costs. With a job to save she is in search of that perfect scoop. One fine day she receives a call which changes all that. It is all planned. She has got all the leads of a story which will change the course of her career. A mystery that has for generations been a part of public discourse. The death of Shastri and the mystery around it.

Written and directed by Vivek Agnihotri, it stars Shweta Basu Prasad, Naseeruddin Shah and Mithun Chakraborty in lead roles. Released on 12 April 2019 it has been deemed politically motivated in light of the 2019 general elections.

Considered India’s first crowd sourced thriller, the film reflects research as well as attention to detail promising to be an apolitical film about a political leader.

While critics argue that the film might be inspired by Hollywood cult-classic 12 Angry Men, Mithun Chakraborty and actress Shweta Basu Prasad garnered rave reviews for their acting.

While some compliment the storyline, there are those who criticize the lack of content.

The film starts dedicating it to all honest journalists of India. In clear cut terms it blasts various establishments saying NGOs are “social terrorists”, Supreme Court judges are “judicial terrorists”, writers and historians are “intellectual terrorists” and the media, of course, are “TRP terrorists”.

While the film could make a captivating thriller with many conspiracy theories but the filmmaker uses the film to take down left, secular and socialist ideologies and institutions, in a fashion that is unintentionally comical.

The film  appropriates terms like “anti-national”, “presstitutes” and “fake news”, which are famously the armour of the current regime and its followers.

There are also facile and tokenistic “balanced” arguments, as a historian character, Aiysha (Pallavi Joshi) puts it, which are bound to throw off right-wing ideologues completely.

The film refers to the Emergency in multiple ways. The filmmaker does not take names and censors them in “official documents” but not in a very subtle manner. The characters do not shy away from being shrill and loud. Agnihotri’s disdain for a person like that is evident as is his distrust in NGO head, Indira Joseph Roy. She explains Russian words like dacha (bungalow) during closed room discussions.

Pankaj Tripathi’s character, a scientist, makes a significant contribution when he stokes communal discourse against Muslims. He is soon shut down. Raagini Phule plaed by Sweta Basu Prasad is a pleasure to watch who is shown as the only voice of reason. Driven by truth to such an extent that when strangled in Tashkent and asked who does she work for, her response is, wait for it.

Agnihotri hammers the message hard backed by strong research. The film is more drama than reality. But here is one of possibility: this was a well-crafted propaganda film that released a day after India went to polls, slipping under the Election Commission radar? says a reputed media house in its review.

Sanjiv Bhatt & The Long Walk to Freedom

It has been a long fight which does not seem to end for the family of Sanjiv Bhatt who has been languishing in jail for almost a year.

With a life imprisonment slapped on him, the family, especially his wife faces something that she calls a life imprisonment for the entire family.

Sanjiv Bhatt faces the wrath of the justice system for taking on the high and mighty – namely Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. An upright civil servant he dared to speakup against those who were witness to the alleged inaction and complacency of State administration during the 2002 Gujarat carnage.

For his wife Sweta Bhatt, it has been a nightmare and a cause of great concern for several decades. In jail since September 5, 2018 for no fault of his, the custodial death case for which he got a lifer dates back to 1990 when he was Additional Superintendent of Police.

All alone in her fight for justice, Shweta has plans to fight till she gets justice. Sanjiv had a run – in with the top guns when he deposed before several commissions and even the apex court about the silent consent of then Gujarat government when people were exterminated en masse post Godhra.

Sanjiv faced vendetta from politicians because he exposed the involvement of political leaders in brutal murders.

Questions are now being raised on the incarceration of Sanjiv Bhatt in a 23-year-old case.

Sweta grabbed limelight when she contested against Narendra Modi in 2012 Assembly elections from Maninagar.

Sanjiv filed an affidavit in 2011 implicating Narendra Modi, Amit Shah and many other high government functionaries.

Bhatt started his journey in 1990 with his first stint at port town of Jamnagar as Assistant Superintendent of Police.

On October 30, riots erupted in Jamjodhpur, following a bandh call to protest arrest of veteran BJP leader L K Advani during his Somnath-to-Ayodhya Rath Yatra.

Sanjiv was ordered by Jamnagar district superintendent of police TS Bisht, his superior, to rush to Jamjodhpur to control the situation. He reached Jamjodhpur around 1 pm on October 30. 133 rioters were rounded up by the police.

Booked under TADA by the Jamjodhpur police they were sent to judicial custody. Two brothers, Prabhudas and Ramesh Vaishani, were among arrested.

All 133 were released from jail on bail after eight days, but four days later Prabhudas Vaishani complaining of back pain was taken for treatment and then he died in a Rajkot hospital.

Cause of death was ascertained as ‘acute renal failure’.

Amrutlal Madjavji Vaishnani called for a post-mortem .Treated as a FIR Jamjodhpur was witness to investigations.

Since then the case has been a complex web of twists and turns.

It went to the state CID (Crime) for investigation. 2,500 pages of evidence later, the Crime Branch declared that there was no evidence found against Bhatt and the five policemen.

The report highlighted the 133 arrested had not complained of any discomfort. There were no external or internal injuries either.

Nephrologist Padmashri Dr HL Trivedi, the founder director of the well-known Kidney Disease and Research Institute of Ahmedabad had personally studied the case.

Sanjiv Bhatt did not have the custody of the person.

The prosecution filed a closure report in the court in 1995.

Things turned ugly in 2011 following his deposition.

He was suspended for abstaining from duty and then the Nanavati Commission summoned him – and finally dismissed him from Indian Police Service after BJP came to power in 2014. Sanjiv has been lodged in Palanpur Jail all this while.

A close look at an order spanning 430 pages and written in Gujarati gives no reason for disregarding the closure report filed in 1995.

In what might raise alarm bells,  a Times of India report shows Gujarat has not punished other policemen accused of similar crimes.

NCRB data shows as many as 180 custodial deaths took place in Gujarat between 2001 and 2016. However, no police personnel was punished for any of these deaths in this time.

Only 26 policemen have been convicted for 1,557 custodial deaths, most from Uttar Pradesh.

A string of police officers have been facing the music for their ability to take on the Gujarat government say some reports. Namely Rahul Sharma, Rajnish Rai,  R.B. Sreekumar, Satish Verma and Kuldip Sharma.

As justice eludes the Bhatt family, it is that element of hope that keeps many like Shweta and her relatives going on, hoping Sanjiv will one day walk out a free man.

Kashmiri Pandits aim to be homeward bound soon

Over 5000 Kashmiri Pandits took shelter in Lucknow when the militancy woes in the valley reached fever pitch. It was back in 1989 that these lot of people gradually made Lucknow their new home.

With a government talking of greater stability in the valley, even the Kashmiri Pandits are hoping that they can one day return to the land which they have always considered their own.

But questions are being now raised on the kind of people who are claiming to be torchbearers of this new revolution under the banner of Panun Kashmir.

Editor, Daily World, Ajit Chak says there are serious doubts on the intent when most people protesting are crorepatis themselves.

He adds, “Protesting against problems faced by Kashmiri Pandits are Sangita whose husband is a PWD Chief Engineer and has 5 properties in Noida. Prabhakar Nagu has a house in Aliganj and enjoys a government job. Deepak Kachru owns a girls hostel in Mahanagar. Meanwhile Sudhir Shivpuri owns 2 properties in Lucknow.”

On Shyama Prasad Mookerji sacrifice day, Panun Kashmir took out a rally in Lucknow to press for safe return of Kashmiri Pandits to the valley, bringing an end to Article 370.

Leading the march, Chandra Prakash Agnihotri of Bhartiya Nagrik Parishad said, “Kashmiri Hindus have tried many times to put across their problem of living as refugees in their own country, but their plight has fallen on deaf ears.”

“Their rights have been violated and they were subjected to barbaric terrorism, besides they were forced to leave their homes.,” he said.

Spokesperson of Panun Kashmir Deepak Kachru said that leaders like Shyama Prasad Mukherji lost their life to integrate Kashmir with India by removing Article 370. Such a draconian article should be withdrawn.

The rally started from Civil Hospital and then reached its final pitstop at the Gandhi statue near GPO.

Bharatiya Nagarik Parishad President Chandra Prakash Agnihotri, Founder NYASI, Ramakant Dube, senior members like HN Pandey, Rina Tripathi, Bharat Samridhhi President Shailendra Dubey, Dheeraj Upadhyay, Panun Kashmir President Ravi Kachroo, Ravindra Katroo, Sudhir Shivpuri, Sangeeta Baqaya, Anjali Jibboo among others were present.

They want allocation of land at subsidized rates and work towards preserving their culture.

Pandits across the board are unanimous in suggesting that the community is just used during elections and then once a government is in power, the issues go to the backburner.

Kashmiri Pandits want quotas in government jobs and increase in reservation in higher studies. They also want a holiday on January 19 that marks exodus day. In UP, Kashmiri Pandits get just 2% reservation.

For Panun Kashmir it has been a longstanding demand that a separate homeland be carved out for the community in the valley with union territory status.

The struggle of the displaced Kashmiri Pandits has entered its 30th year.

As an organization, Panun Kashmir is a frontal organisation of 3.5 lakh displaced Pandits.

Lucknow gets louder: Noise Pollution haunts city of Nawabs

Noise Pollution has dangerous ramifications only further troubling human kind. While there are checks and balances put in place, sounds continue to cross bearable decibels. During monsoons it sees an upward trend.

Gomtinagar is nosiest during the day and Indiranagar during night. For Charbagh it is chaotic and noisy in night and day. These are revelations in the Noise Monitoring Report by IITR. Even though noise pollution has gone down in residential and commercial areas, the noise pollution factor refuses to die down.

While the permissible noise limit in residential areas is 55 decibels, Gomtinagar recorded the highest at 72.7 decibels. This was followed by Indiranagar, Vikasnagar and Aliganj.

Daytime noise pollution levels have gone down in most areas except Aliganj. Even as the permissible night limit is 45 decibels, Indiranagar has recorded a high of 62.9 decibel.

Noise pollution in the night has gone down drastically in most places except Vikasnagar. Charbagh remains a constant irritant when it comes to pollution in commercial spaces. Aminabad, Chowk and Alambagh are other places that call for immediate attention.

Senior scientists in the city have been quoted as saying that in order to keep noise pollution under control it is important that greater awareness is spread against use of pressure horns, loudspeakers and other deafening devices.

The poor statistics raise alarm bells among scientists given that only last year the DM Kaushal Raj Sharma had announced stern measures to check noise pollution where marriage halls and guest houses playing music above permissible limit would be seized.

Photo by Jens Mahnke on Pexels.com

As a part of a crackdown in the city, the administration had removed 1,200 loudspeakers being used in an unauthorised manner.

Despite efforts to curb use of loudspeakers in compliance with high court orders in the state, not much has been made out of the actions. Reportedly as per UP 100 most complaints on the noise front came from Lucknow. The city made 2,282 calls regarding noise pollution.

The highest number of complaints on that front came from Mahanagar. DJs and loudspeakers are a common irritant in the city. Noise pollution peaks during monsoon season.

Nearly 94% complaints have been resolved but maximum complaints came from seniors in the city on grounds of poor health conditions.

Not just in India as a whole, even in developing nations like European ones, top three emitters of noise are road transport, railways, and aircraft. Other sources include — street noise, and decibel from local events.

The most dangerous consequences of noise pollution include – sleep Interference, hearing impairment, speech interference, annoyance, fatigue, and emotional distress.

Not just humans but even animals face consequences with them eventually avoiding migration to places where noise levels are over 100 decibels. Fishes and birds stop laying eggs and mammals witness miscarriages.

दुआ करता हूँ चारुलता पटेल की ज़िंदगी हर बुज़ुर्ग को नसीब हो

भारत बनाम बांग्लादेश की टक्कर कई माएनों में अनोखी थी. भारत ने 28 रन से बांग्लादेश को शिकस्त दी, वोहीं रोहित शर्मा ने चौथा शतक जड़ दिया. पर जिसने खूब सुर्खियाँ बटोरी वो थीं  87 की चारुलता पटेल.गाल में तिरंगा, हाथ में तिरंगा, तिरंगा साफ़ा लगा कर और ट्रमपॅट बजा कर उन्होने देश की जीत के जश्न का भागीदार बनीं.

जिस देश में बुढ़ापा कैययों के लिए अभिशाप से कम नही, ऐसे में एक हिन्दुस्तानी, चारुलता दादी जब भारत का खेल देखने जाती हैं और हंसते हुए टीम का हौसला बढ़ाती हैं तो अच्छा लगता है. उम्रदराज़ लोगों को जिस देश में वृधाश्रम  में पटक के खुद बच्चे  शनोशौकत की ज़िंदगी जीते हैं ऐसे में हर एक को इससे सीख लेनी चाहिए.

बच्चों को भी और उन बुज़ुर्ग लोगों को भी की ज़िंदगी खुल के जीने की कोई उमर नही होती और आप चाहें तो आप अपने दम पे बिना किसी रोक टोक के खुशी मना सकते हैं. अच्छा लगा जब उन्हें विराट ने आके इज़्ज़त दी.

आनंद महिंद्रा साहब का भी मैं मुरीद हो गया क्यूंकी उन्होने उनकी ज़िम्मेदारी भी लेने की बात की जिससे आने वाले समय में ऐसा कोई मॅच हो वो जा सकें. ज़माना बदल रहा है. आज जो पैदा करते हैं वोही कमरे में बंद कर प्रताड़ना के शिकार होते हैं.

ओल्ड एज  होम दो बार जाना हुआ जो देखा वाकई बहुत दर्दनाक था. एक बार एक डॉक्टर ने कहा था, क्या बतायें जिन्होने बच्चों को प्यार दिया आज वोही बच्चे महीनों से नदारत हैं. उनकी बूढ़ी आँखें उन्हें देखने के लिए तरस जाती हैं और हम सांत्वना देने के अलावा कुछ नही कर सकते.

लखनऊ को देश भर में तहज़ीब, नज़ाकत और नफ़ासत का शहर माना जाता है. ऐसे ही शहर में बढ़ते वृधाश्रम इस बात का गवा हैं की हमने अपने बुज़ुर्गो को उनके वृधवस्था में अवहेलना के अलावा कुछ नही दिया है.

कई नामी गिरामी वृधाश्रम मसलन समर्पण, भारतीय वरिष्ठ नागरिक असोसियेशन, आस्था, ओम सेवा संकल्प, छबि शांति धाम और सेवर्त वृधढा आश्रम शहेर के इस क्षेत्र में काम करने वाले सबसे प्रचलित नाम हैं.

हालाकी इस शहर में गोलडन एज हेल्प लाइन की शुरुआत समाज कल्याण संस्थान ने की, पर आँकड़े बताते हैं  घर के अंदर अत्याचार और बुरा व्यवहार बढ़ा ही है घटा नही

चाहे उनसे जायदाद हड़पने की बात हो या फिर पैसा छीनना या मानसिक प्रताड़ना देना हर चीज़ में आज का बुज़ुर्ग वर्ग खुद को ठगा महसूस करता है.

बुज़ुर्गों का ख़ासा तक़लीफ़ पब्लिक के बीच में होती है ख़ास कर पोस्ट ऑफीस, पब्लिक हॉस्पिटल के कर्मचारियों से, सब्ज़ी वालों से और बॅंक में.

शोधकर्ताओं ने भी माना है की एक बुज़ुर्ग व्यक्ति को मानसिक रूप में कमज़ोर करने की भरपूर कोशिश की जाती है.

नॅशनल पॉलिसी ओं सीनियर सिटिज़न्स, 2011 के मुताबिक 2000-2050 में 60 साल के इर्द गिर्द लोगों की संख्या 326% बढ़ेगी. दुनिया के 1/8th” बुज़ुर्ग भारत में रहते हैं.

अकेले 2014 में 8,973 केस वृधों से बदतमीज़ी के सामने आए थे.

संविधान का आर्टिकल 21 इंसान को जीने की और अपने निर्णय लेने की पूरी छूट देता है.

भारत में मेंटेनेन्स आंड वेलफेर ऑफ पेरेंट्स आंड सीनियर सिटिज़न्स आक्ट 2007 में लागू हुआ.

एक देश व्यापी बहेस 2018 में तब छिड़ी जब सामाजिक कार्यकर्ता रवि कालरा KBC 10 में आए और उन्होने दिल दहला देने वाले किससे साझा किया.

उन्हों ने कहा समाज का एक बड़ा तपका है जो अपने बुज़ुर्गो को जहन्नुम से भी बत्तर ज़िंदगी दे रहे हैं.

उन्होने बच्चन के शो में कहा कैसे एक बच्चे ने संपत्ति छीना और फिर कोमा से ग्रसित बाप को चूहों के बीच छोड़ के ताला मार दिया. उन्होने आगे बोला एक औरत को उनके बच्चे इतना कम खाना देते थे की उनका वज़न महेज़ 12 किलो रह गया था.

आज ऊँचे ऊँचे पदों पर बैठे उन बच्चों को याद रखना होगा की आपका भी टाइम आएगा जब मानसिक और शारीरिक रूप से कमज़ोर होंगे, कहीं ऐसा ना हो आप को भी आपके औलाद ठेंगा दिखा दें, जब आप खुद महसूस करेंगे उस दर्द को तब तक आपके लिए वृधाश्रम की काल कोठरी आपके लिए बाहें  फैलाए खड़ी होगी.

FACTFILE (Statistics revealed in Surveys/Helpage India Data)

  • Among the total elderly population, 78% live in rural areas.
  • India is home to 1 out of every 10 senior citizens globally
  • Reportedly 50% elders have experienced abuse
  • 72% of abused elderly are of the age group 60–69 years
  •  25% of age group 70–79 years
  •  3% of age group are 80 or above 80 years.
  • 11% senior citizens are treated badly at private hospitals
  • 52% senior citizens suffer rude behaviour for not dressing well

Let’s admit we all called Zaira Wasim un – Islamic

Two things happened in life side by side for me. One side there were reports that Zaira Wasim was quitting Bollywood because there was a clear contradiction between her career and her religion. Back home there were reports that next time you go to Bada Imambara you will have to dress up well so that you do not look or seem to violate the set regressive thought that pervades a certain section of people. In a country where we all have equal right to speak, if a Mohua Mitra has the right to speak up with immense force, so does Zaira who has achieved something if not a lot in the industry.

There are reports that the there were Fatwas issued against the actress but I guess the problem starts when we start dictating a woman’s choices. Who decides what a 20 plus girl should do with her life. Why should people call her ungrateful. At 20 something maybe she is not good enough a chooser of words but I guess the intent is not to harm.

Does it behove of the senior tribe in the industry and the illuminati to give her lectures on how she is a product of Bollywood and her whole soul identity is nothing but that. The fact that an actress was handpicked by perfectionist Aamir Khan and she rose the ladder should be a great thing.

The fact that a girl from the valley dares to chase dreams out of a strife torn region. The fact that she comes to Mumbai, she rules and conquers hearts that is the biggest thing in life. Whether Bollywood is unIslamic is not the debate, whether she does wrong by writing online a message is not the debate, the debate should be on why we shamelessly amplify the Islamic credentials of the actress taking a cue from the letter.

How many of those giving her lectures and certificates have actually reached out and helped the girl when she needed a moral boost when she needed it the most. The comparisons with Nusrat Jahan do not hold water. One is a politician, the other a star. And more importantly Zaira Wasim is one independent individual.

Does not sound nice to compare two diametrically opposite individuals. Just because yesteryears stars Saira Banu, Waheeda Rehman, Dilip Kumar, Nargis, Shahrukh or an AR Rahman did not feel threatened does not mean that Saira cannot. More than a generation gap, the industry and its working has seen a seachange and society at large too has increased pressure on what is ok and what is not. And today threats fly thick and fast.

The Tarek Fatah’s, the Swami Chakrapani’s and those issuing Fatwas can hence find something better to do. As a citizen of this great nation I think it is much more than religion or politics. It is about someone’s personal choices and aspirations. Let her have the last laugh in the loudest way possible.

Heated TV debates and twitter gyanbaazi needs to stop because it is a 23 year old’s life and why dissect her choices and decisions in public domain.

In a crystal clear letter that Zaira Wasim putout  justifying her decision, she mentions, “For a very long time now it has felt like I have struggled to become someone else. As I had just started to explore and make sense of the things to which I dedicated my time, efforts and emotions and tried to grab hold of a new lifestyle, it was only for me to realise that though I may fit here perfectly, I do not belong here.”

Very simply, she says, “I am not truly happy with this identity i.e the line of work”.

It is even more important for us to respect Zaira because eight out of 10 employees in the country are not happy with their work as per surveys.

Its common. A dislike stems from long hours, low pay, an unsupportive boss, lack of recognition, no scope for promotions, work-life balance, sheer boredom says a report.

Such people crib, complain, evade work and make mistakes.

Flexibility and choice are two most important things says a Gallup report.

It would not be wrong to say that we as a nation and the Bollywood industry failed her because in 2016 after photos of Zaira Wasim surfaced with trimmed hair for Dangal she faced a massive online backlash. She was repeatedly branded un – Islamic. Her meeting with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti too attracted the ire of the common folk with her receiving death threats. Her apologies too saw controversial twists and turns courtesy the media.

She had also  been harassed mid-air on an Air Vistara flight UK981 between Delhi and Mumbai. The accused, Vikas Sachdeva of Chandivli in Mumbai was subsequently arrested and charged under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO), given Wasim was a legal minor.

Zaira will always be remembered as a recipient of numerous accolades, including a Filmfare Award and a National Film Award. She also has the distinction of winning the National Child Award for Exceptional Achievement by Ram Nath Kovind, the President of India in 2017.

Her debut was in Dangal, where she portrayed the role of Geeta Phogat.

The highest grossing Indian film it grossed more than ₹2,000 crore (US$290 million) worldwide. She got a lot of appreciation for the musical drama Secret Superstar ranked among the highest-grossing Indian films. Awards like the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress and Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress kept her in good spirits as a professional.

In June 2019, she announced she would be leaving the industry

Her last film will be the Sky is Pink helmed by Shonali Bose.

AIB: Subtle Art of Fucking up in true blue Bakchod Style

AIB from the pinnacle of glory fell into the deep pit of oblivion with them getting trapped in a sexual misconduct case which did not just damage livelihoods but even wiped out one of the most promising standup collectives from the comedy scene in India

Comedian Tanmay Bhat recently shared a message on his social media handle where he spoke of suffering from clinical depression. He in the video claims that he has been feeling a little mentally checked out.  Bhat has been out of the comedy scene, eversince the axe fell on him for alleged inaction on his longstanding team member Utsav Chakraborty for being involved in a sexual misconduct case.

Having risen to fame with comedy group AIB, he says – I feel almost paralysed and unable to participate socially, online or even offline. For most of my adult life I worked at a company that I was trying to build. And having to watch the letting the office go, all the people who worked with us, having to say good bye to that took a toll on me mentally and physically which finally came to a headway around the end of the last year and doctors told me that I am suffering from clinical depression and told me to consider doing something about it.”

Not long back AIB made it public that Bhat would no longer be their CEO.

Artists of all hues have come out in support of the standup act. Singer-composer Vishal Dadlani wrote – ” No rush, no pressure, take time you need to figure it out, but know that there is a world of love for you out there.”

Comedian Kenny Sebastian wrote: “Gone through so much and come out wiser and stronger, this will be no different.”

All this love has come at a time when Tanmay Bhat and Gursimran Khamba have been dropped from Prime Originals Comicstaan 2 and Gormint.

While action on AIB has been prompt, comedian Kanan Gill still has figured in Comicstaan 2.

Not long back even Hotstar cancelled On Air with AIB in the midst of third season. Even the Mumbai Film Festival shelved AIB’s Chintu Ka Birthday from the lineup.

Even Gursimran Khamba has been accused of sexual misconduct and was sent on indefinite leave.

In a statement issued from the team, they were clear All India Bakchod (AIB) is broke and the YouTube channel is dead. This was attributed to “business going to zero,” with them not being able to “sustain outgoing costs.”

Having started as a small podcast by Bhat and Khamba in Mumbai in 2012, the name conjured up humorous appeal and a satirical take on politics and beyond.

The team saw the entry of Rohan Joshi and Ashish Shakya as co-founders after its conception, and the four turned the gamble into a full-fledged creative company with uniquely original stand-up shows and often branded content.

The team sailed into rough weather when they did a first of it’s kind roast in india. In 2015, AIB’s controversial roast show ‘AIB Knockout’ had ruffled quite a few feathers with activist Santosh Daundkar filing an FIR against 14 people appearing in it. Featuring the likes of Karan Johar, Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt, among others the country was taking note wth them having entered the big league.

In a year these stars were featured in a ‘India’s top 10 YouTube superstars’ list that termed them role models. Featuring alongside Shah Rukh Khan in Forbes India’s 2015 list as top earners the country was seeing their rise.

Venturing into an advertising arm Vigyapanti and then a stand alone writing programme First Draft turned them into a unique communication agency.

With each controversy that came their way, AIB grew stronger. The ability to take on the Prime Minister, speaking up on free speech, or the Snapchat dog filter fiasco, captioned #wanderlust”.

But there moment of retrospection came when the #MeToo movement turned AIB into those who themselves had scant regard for women. This completely shattered their image creating deep divisions.

Utsav Chakraboty on 4 October 2018 was charged of misconduct by writer-comedian Mahima Kukreja.

After a string of apologies, AIB finally succumbed saying they had messed up consequently spelling doom for AIB.

But the broader point is that AIB had been consistent in putting out content speaking of feminism, critiquing oppressive structures, and speaking truth to power.

Despite his suspension being lifted, Bhat is no longer CEO, Khamba now plans to have his own venture called Light@27.

As of date AIB remains broke, no CEO, no office and barely any employees. Co-founders Rohan Joshi and Ashish Shakya have been holding fort all this while. The loss though is for those 3.5 million YouTube subscribers.

एक प्राचीन कला जो महेज़ फिल्म की टाइटल बन के रेह गयी

Courtesy – Sahapedia

एक ऐसे देश में जहाँ पर सिनिमा जगत के अलावा भी कई विधि विधायें है कला में, ऐसे में गुलाबो सीताबो को बचाने के लिए बुधी जीवियों को गहरा मंथन करना होगा । जिससे ये विरासत लुप्त ना हो जाए…..

लखनऊ शहर में आजकल बहुत धूम है। शहर में अमिताभ बच्चन अपने अगले फिल्म की शूटिंग कर रहे हैं। शूजीत सरकार की गुलाबो सीताबो जिसमे आयुष्मान खुराना भी उनके साथ काम कर रहे हैं । बच्चन अपने किरदार के लिए चर्चाओं में बने हुए हैं, पर अगर बात की जाए इस फिल्म के नाम की पृष्टभूमि की, तो इसका नाम प्राचीन गुलाबो सीताबो के कठपुतली कला पर आधारित है ।
एक ऐसी कला जो लखनऊ की २०० साल से भी ज़्यादा पुरानी विरासत है, पर अब उसके ना तो कद्रदान हैं, और ना ही वो कला दिखाने वाले । एक ऐसे समय में जब संचार के क्षेत्र में नित नये प्रयास किए जा रहे हैं, तो गुलाबो सीताबो की माँग घटी ही है बढ़ी नही ।
विगत कुछ वर्षों में कुछ चुनिंदे आयोजनों में कठपुतलियों के द्वारा स्थानिय कलाकारों ने रंग बिखेरा, पर इसकी असली चमक नवाबों के ज़माने में दिखती थी, जब उनके हरमों में इस कला से मनोरंजन प्रदान किया जाता था ।
गुलाबो सीताबो की अनूठी नोक झोक जो दो औरतों के बीच की कहानी है, पत्नी और सौतन के बीच की दास्तान बयान करती है ।
नवाब वाजिद अली शाह के समय से चली आ रही गुलाबो सीताबो की परंपरा क्क के जिले जिले में मशहूर है । साल में एक बार कलाकार घूम घूम के इसको लोगो तक पहुँचते थे कुछ समय पहले तक ।
पर जानकार बताते हैं की नयी पीढ़ी को मनोरंजन के नये स्रोत मिलने से इस कला को ख़ासा झटका लगा है ।
कई स्थानिय कलाकारों को अपना कठपुतली खेल छोड़ दूसरे कमाई के साधन ढूँढने पड़े हैं ।
कलाकारों के एक समूह राज्य सरकार को आगा करता आया है की अपनी सांझी विरासत कहीं खो ना जाए ।
गुलाबो सीताबो दास्तानी रूपी कठपुतलियाँ हैं जो नाना रंग के, सुंदर कलाकृतियों वाले , चमकीले कपड़े पहने हुए और सुंदर आभूषण के साथ मिलते हैं । बहुत बार देखा गया है इस कठपुतली खेल में बोल के और गा कर सूत्रधार अपनी बात रखता है । अजीबोगरीबे मज़ाक, कुछ तीखी बातें और कुछ खिल्ली ठट्ठा इस पेशकश के अभिन्न अंग हैं। गुलाबो सीताबो की कहानी हमारे रोज़ मररा की जि़ंदगी के इर्द गिर्द घूमती है । ढोलक और मंजीरा के साथ ये कठपुतली खेल देख लोग मंत्रमुग्ध हो जाते हैं ।

Courtesy – TOI


इतिहास के जानकारों का मानना है की १८५७ में कठपुतलियों का इस्तेमाल देशप्रेम को बढ़ावा देने के लिए किया जाता था ।
साल १९६३ में लखनऊ के लिटरेसी हाउस में कठपुतली बनना शुरू हुई । इसी के ठीक बाद लोगों में इस कला को सीखने की इच्छा जागी । कई कलाकार यहाँ से पढक़े आगे चलकर सूचना विभाग, संस्कृति विभाग द्वारा आयोजित कार्यक्रमों में इस कला की खुश्बू बिखेरते रहे ।
लखनऊ और आस पास के इलाक़ों में गुलाबो सीताबो का नज़ारा त्योहारों में ज़्यादातर दिखता था. सतरवी सदी में जन्मी ये कला अब दम तोड़ रही है ।
इस नये युग में जब ज़माना माउस और कंप्यूटर में मनोरंजन ढूंढता है तो गुलाबो सीताबो और अन्य प्रकार के कठपुतली खेलों में फेर बदल भी किया गया है ।
कभी परंपराओं पर आधारित ये खेल अब हाल फिलहाल के ज्वलंत मुद्दों पर समाज को आएना दिखा कर एक संवाद स्थापित करने की चेष्ता करती है ।
रेडियो और टीवी के मध्यम से पढ़ा लिखा वर्ग इसी कोशिश में है की कैसे पप्पेट्री को एक नया मुकाम दिलाया जा सके । बच्चे जो कार्टून नेटवर्क, पोगो और निक देखना पसंद करते हैं उनके लिए भी पप्पेट के द्वारा कुछ सिखानेका प्रयास निरंतर जारी है ।
इसका सीधा उदाहरण है गली गली सिम सिम जो की विदेशों के सेसमी स्ट्रीट पर आधारित है ।
लखनऊ में वरिष्ट कलाकार मेराज आलम, उनकी सुपुत्री तान्या आलम, कठपुतली कलाकार प्रदीप त्रिपाठी, चंद्र शेखर शुकला, उमा शुकला और भूरेे मास्टर सबने अभूतपूर्व योगदान दिया इस कला को बढ़ावा देने में ।
ना केवल लखनऊ में, बल्कि देश में इसकी कलात्मकता को बरकरार रखने के लिए कई कलाकार प्रयत्न करते रहे हैं। जिनमे सुप्रसीध हैं – मेहेर रुस्तम कॉनट्रेकटर, सुरेश डट, दादी पुदुँजी, जी वेणु, TN.शंकरनथन, अनुरूपा रॉय, रामदास पध्य, राचेल मॅक बीन, र.न. शुकला, दिलीप चटर्जी, ब. सहाइ एवं कई अन्य नामचीं हस्तियाँ ।
समाज में जागरूकता बढ़ाने के भाओ से एनसीईआरटी ने भी कठपुतली को एक विषय के रूप में मान्यता दी ।
गुलाबो सीताबो का प्रदर्शन जो गावों व नगरों की गलियों से शुरू हुई, जैसे जैसे आधुनिक हवा चली इसकी लोकप्रियता कम होती चली गयी ।
कठपुतलियों का जि़क्र ना केवल महाभारत में है, बल्कि पाणिनी, तिरुवल्लुवर और पतंजलि ने भी अपने लेखनी में इस प्राचीन कला का ज़िक्र किया है ।
कठपुतली को नाना नामों से जाना जाता है उनमे से सबसे प्रचलित हैं -पुतुलनाच, पुतुलनच, पुतुलभाओना या पुतलभाओरिया ।
किसी भी देश के लिए उसकी कला, उसकी संस्कृति उसका गहना है और अगर वो ही दम तोडऩे लगे तो ये चिंता का विषय है । पत्रकारिता विभागों में पप्पेट्री और ट्रडीशनल मीडीया सिखाने वालों को इस पर शोध करना चाहिए की कैसे कठपुतली कलाकारों और उनकी कला को मीडीया के बदलते परिपेक्ष में मुख्यधारा से जोड़ा जा सके ।

How an injured shoulder conspired against destiny to churn out Brand SRK

From just Rs 1500 in his pocket when he reached Bombay to being Bollywood’s undisputed Badshah: Delhi boy SRK has never looked back

As youngsters we have always been fascinated by the aura of King Khan, Badshah Khan better known as SRK or by his maiden name Shahrukh Khan. While the Badshah has been a runaway hit among his fans, his rise is no less a rags to riches story.

While its common to say that some were born to be a star, Khan who has his roots in Delhi  and Afghanistan grew up fighting his way out to rise the social ladder. An actor, producer cum television personality, Khan has the distinction of appearing in over 80 films. He has won multiple accolades, including 14 Filmfare Awards. He has been conferred the Padma Shri, the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and the Légion d’honneur.

He moved from Delhi to Mumbai to pursue a full-time career in Bollywood, and was quickly signed up for four films.

When Khan came to Mumbai, he had just Rs 1500 with him and wanted to earn a lakh at least.

Fortunately he claims even though he has had to take up roles rejected by others, he never seld his soul for stardom.

Today SRK owns a Rolls Royce Coupe costing Rs 4.1 crore. SRK also boasts of a Bugatti Veyron parked in his garage. Apart from that he has a Mercedes Benz S600 Guard worth Rs 2.8 crore. A fan of BMW cars, he has BMW 6 Series, 7 Series and BMW i8 parked at home.

Widely popular his homes are ‘Mannat’, Dubai’s Palm Jumeriah worth 24 crore and a villa in London’s Park Lane neighbourhood worth Rs 172 crore.

His dream vanity van is worth Rs 3.8 crore.

Born to a Muslim family in New Delhi his initial years were spent in Mangalore. He is grandson to Ifthikar Ahmed, a chief engineer of the port in the 1960s. His paternal grandfather, Jan Muhammad was an ethnic Pashtun from Afghanistan. His dad Meer Taj Mohammed Khan played the role of an Indian independence activist in Peshawar.  Khan’s mother, Lateef Fatima, was the daughter of a senior government engineer.

Brought up in Rajendra Nagar neighbourhood of Delhi his father was a businessman who had a restaurant, and they lived a middle-class life in rented apartments. A product of a school in Central Delhi, he excelled in studies and sports receiving the Sword of Honour. Inclined to enter the sporting arena he failed to make the cut with a shoulder injury coming in its way.

Then is when he took active part in stage plays and received praise for his imitations of Bollywood actors. He has always admired greats like Dilip Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan, and Mumtaz.

An Economics student, he spent most of his time at Delhi’s Theatre Action Group (TAG)under Barry John. He has been part of National School of Drama during his early career in Bollywood. When his parents passed away, he took full responsibility of his sister.

He started off as an actor in the 1980 appearing in TV shows, his cinema debut  was in 1992 with Deewana . Khan’s first starring role was in Lekh Tandon’s television series Dil Dariya, that started rolling in 1988, but production delays led to 1989 series Fauji becoming his TV debut.

He carved a niche for himself with performances in Darr, Baazigar and Anjaam  each a stellar portrayl of a villian. He showed his romantic flair with Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, Dil To Pagal Hai, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Mohabbatein  and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham.

As a star his versatility came out as he donned the role of an alcoholic in Devdas, a hockey player in Chak De India, a NASA scientist in Swades  and a man with Asperger syndrome in My Name Is Khan. He raked in the moolah with ventures like Chennai Express, Happy New Year , Dilwale and Raees. Not to forget the very popular Don franchise.

Part of several reputed collaborations and cricket leagues, he is also much sought after on TV as a presenter lauded by World Economic Forum and UNESCO for his philanthropic work.

In SRK’s own account a lot of people helped him to be who he is today

He has in an interview said that the biggest names including Hema Malini imparted wisdom to him so that he would be able to make better choices. For the younger generation the message is loud and clear – It’s like that Survivor song – The thrill of the fight is to stand up and fight the challenge of the rival and always aim the eye of the Tiger.