Blog pic

Blog pic
Pic courtesy:Vidya Nair

06 September, 2016

Issue No. 180 I August 2016

EDITORIAL

As India celebrated its 70th year of Independence, one can look back at the evolution of our democracy with both pride and disappointment. The political parties set aside their differences and showed rare unanimity in passing the GST bill and stood shoulder to shoulder on their stand on the Kashmir issue. On the other side, continued atrocities against Dalits and women showed an antediluvian mind set. All the political parties and society at large are to be blamed for this state of affairs.

We started our Independence Day celebrations on a bright note. After a week of overcast skies, the clouds cleared miraculously and the sun shone brightly. The badminton court was decked with tri-colour balloons  As Kiaan, Myrah, Mani Mama and Sujata Sundaresan hoisted the national flag, everybody joined Subadha’s students – Shashvath, Sahana, Avantika, Sameeksha, Surya, Radhika, Mani, Tanvi, Adwita, Ananya and Sivasree – to sing the national anthem. Shreeya and Poorvaja, trained by Mrs. Kalyani, sang a couple of songs. The most engaging part of the morning came when TV singing star Karthik (Mr. N. L. Ganapathi's nephew) sang two songs written by freedom fighter Subramaniam Bharati. Shouts of encore rang out and he obliged with another tuneful rendition that ended with a standing ovation from the rapt audience. As a grand finale, our regular crooners, Bhavani, Seema, Sumathi, Sudha Easwaran, Gomathi, Rekha, Sujata, Murli and Vinod Asthana amongst others opened their lungs out till the last person was left standing. Laddus and eclairs were distributed.

You would be justified if you are exasperated by the repeated sinking of the perimeter road at several places, despite the repairs being carried out. The fact is the debris that got removed after the digging of the ditches should have actually gone back into the pit. A lot of the debris however had to be removed because after leaving room for the trench, the piled up debris was hampering the movement of cars and people. We are fortunate that we have had copious rains this monsoon which will help settle the soil. The reason that the road is sinking repeatedly is because the original road surface and the underlay was compacted under high pressure by a road roller. That kind of compaction is not possible under the present circumstances. Therefore, when it rains the soil settles in the voids, causing the sinking. Don't fret, after the monsoon, the uneven areas will be levelled and dressed and the road will be restored to its original state. We factored the sinking of the road in our calculations. Some portion of the paver contractor’s bill was withheld for the post monsoon repair.

When BJP proposed a ban on cow slaughter, they may not have foreseen that it will breed a new class of people who would exploit the sentiment for their personal gain. The fault lines of faith are being routinely put to test by religious bigots on either side of the majority and minority faiths. It is up to us to resist the polarisation potential of the leaders of this religious divide. Don't oblige the bigots by giving grist to their mill. Actually, no other country in the world approaches our capacity for revealing the human race at its most progressive and regressive in the same breath.

The new Metro station across the road from Savitri would make commuting by the Metro a breeze. No more battling your way through traffic to reach Hauz Khas station. The only catch was to cross the main road from Savitri. Through the tireless efforts of Citizens Alliance, a voluntary body of which I happen to be a member, representing all the Alaknanda colonies, Chittaranjan Park and GK, the Union Minister of Transport, Mr. Nitin Gadkari has agreed to convert the one direction flyover adjoining Savitri to a dual direction flyover. This will allow the traffic from Chirag Dilli heading towards Nehru Place to go over the flyover. The Metro station will be operational from December 2016 but it may take a while to have the flyover. Until then commuters from the Savitri side will have to access the station through a narrow subway from Savitri.

CM Kejriwal lavishes crores of rupees on ads proclaiming AAP's achievements not only in the Capital but in all corners of the country. A recent CAG report mentions that 85% of the money spent on ads has been in other states. Does the Delhi taxpayer have to fund AAP's political aspirations in other states? I think not.

Instead, if the money was spent wisely, it could have fixed all the problems that bedevil the city. That is not to be. We still have to deal with potholed roads, broken pavements non-existent street lights, damaged medians. Even his claims that pollution came down during odd-even experiment is a lot of fluff. It is not borne out by data. I am not going to fall for his malarkey. He has presented the public distorted, mendacious and relentlessly hostile accusations about Prime Minister Modi. He is just a pint sized assemblage of shortcomings. Vain and self absorbed. I voted for him not realising what he will turn out to be. Even his capable lieutenants like Mr. Saurabh Bharadwaj, our local MLA, are rendered ineffective because a great deal of the revenue at his disposal is spent on banners and sundry other shows glorifying the achievements of AAP. He probably is just following the instructions from the proverbial high command, akin to the one the Congress has.

Extensive pruning of trees was done in the colony. There are two diametrically opposite views on this. There are a lot of people who complain that they do not get enough natural light, are upset with the proliferation of creepy crawlies, termites and mosquitoes or the damage the tree roots are causing to the buildings and want the trees pruned or even removed! There are others who take delight in the crowning glory of Yamuna with the tall and magnificent trees providing a home to birds and reducing the effects of pollution through the generation of oxygen. Trees also act as a dust and noise barrier. I belong to the latter school of thought and am quite distressed with the way the trees have been pruned. However, I have no right to criticise because if I had wanted a better job to be done I should have volunteered to get it done. Since I did not do that, I reserve any comments. There are several armchair critics who do not take part in the exercise but are quick to pull the trigger and criticise. Seetha, who spent a lot of time tirelessly walking around the colony for three whole days supervising, was at the receiving end of a lot of flak. I think it is grossly unfair. Pruning of trees is such a contentious subject that if you do, you are damned and if you don't, you are still damned. One can never be right. In the light of this Hobson's choice, a person who undertakes the job should not be censured so badly as he/she comes under immense pressure if the residents’ problems are not addressed within reasonable time. There may have been acts of omission in a couple of cases but that still does not call for using intemperate language. What we need is a set of sensible guidelines on planting of trees, pruning of trees or cutting of trees. The Horticulture sub-committee of which I am also a part should not just frame these rules to be approved by the MC; the said sub-committee should also undertake that job and address the concerns of the residents. One cannot brush aside genuine complaints of the residents, otherwise they may take actions on their own which will be regrettable.

The Janmashtami celebrations started on a full house, albeit in muggy weather conditions. Sadhana School of Music & Dance students kicked off the day’s musical performance composed and arranged by Ramanan Venkataraman featuring Radhika Jayaraman, Ramya Vishwanathan and Madhavi Samson on the sitar, Radhika Venkataraman on Hansaveena and Sai Chaitanya on the tabla. This was followed by a Hindustani vocal recital by Madhavi Samson, Rekha Raghavendra, Shyamala Sarathy, Elizabeth Thomas and Deepa Nair. Then came the dancers, with V. Padmavati doing a Bharatanatyam recital and Vedika Arora and Manissha Kiran performing Kathak. Thereafter, Subadha’s singers – Shashvath, Sahana, Avantika, Sameeksha, Surya, Radhika, Mani and Tanvi – sang devotional songs.  Poorvaja rendered a bhajan, with Purnima Satish joining her later in another bhajan. The Yamuna kids then displayed their prodigious talent by choreographing a dance number, "Maiya Yashoda" featuring, Anushka, Ananya, Aiden, Vanshika Arora, Vanshika Rajpurohit and Sahana Iyer as gopis and Adwita as Krishna. The grand finale and standout performance of the day was Bhavani and Sumathi’s sublime rendition of Meera Bhajans, ably accompanied by Anirudh Sundaresan on the tabla. This was a tribute to M.S. Subbulakshmi on the legendary singer’s 100th birth anniversary. It was a pity some in the audience left early and thus missed out on this outstanding recital. Talent seems to be oozing in Yamuna which makes for many wonderful evening soirees. Tiny tots Kian and Saiansh cracked open the ‘dahi handi’ – filled with toffees in this case – and there was a mad scramble as the gathered children dived to grab the goodies. There were delectable North Indian, South Indian and Guajarati eats. Mr. Thangadurai, with his customary hospitality, distributed sweets to all those who were present. It made for a splendid evening.

Get ready for pookalam and Onam feast on Saturday, 10th September, 2016. Please buy the coupons at Rs. 250 each latest by 5th September from the office.

SNIPPETS

Girls who until recently were students have moved into professions that put them in the limelight. I spotted Aishwarya Iyer (Soumya) of B-301 covering a story in NDTV in prime time news. She has always been a confident girl.

*****************

Shashvath Arun of G-306 has made Yamuna proud. His photo is featured in the Swachh Bharat banners released by the Government.


*****************

Our poster boy, Abhilash of A-204 has been blessed with a son. Sreelakshmi and junior are doing fine. Abhilash will not anymore be in a position to stay away from home for twenty days in a month. He will have to do his bit of nappy changing. Our winsome Romeo has been tamed.

******************

Mr. B. M. S. Murthy of C-003 has turned 80. His Sadabishekam celebration was held in the main lawn on 31st August, 2016. While the heavens showered their blessings but the rainfall was heavy and part of the function was moved elsewhere. Mama & mami looked radiant. The lunch was sumptuous. His many admirers, friends and relatives were present to wish him good luck and long life.


****************

Abhinav Kumar (Charmi) of G-305 who got weary of gravity defying feats on a daily basis climbing three floors, decided to move two floors down to G-105. I thought youngsters like him would like a penthouse in the top floor and welcome the free exercise they get climbing. But Charmi had other ideas. Anyway, each to his own.



CALENDAR OF EVENTS FOR SEPTEMBER, 2016

DATE
TIME
EVENT
VENUE
10.9.16
7.30 PM
POOKALAM AND ONAM DINNER
COMMUNITY HALL

05 August, 2016

Issue No. 179 I July 2016

                                                                                     
EDITORIAL
The weather has been the biggest cause of complaint for most of us. When it is too hot we wish it would rain and when it rains heavily we have other concerns and wish it would stop. Many ground floor flats including mine got flooded, thereby damaging the furniture and other odds and ends. In the neighbour's flat they had to dismantle the wooden flooring as it got completely soaked. Some of the ground floor flats closer to the main gate face this problem year after year. The water comes in both from the shaft and the rear veranda.

The Gulmohur tree near A Block gate collapsed and posed a danger to passersby. It required Seetha's persistent follow-up with Mr. Kasana and MCD to have the tree cut and removed. Gulmohur trees have very fragile branches and tend to snap with very little wind velocity. In this case the roots snapped and the tree collapsed. We should not plant Gulmohur trees anymore and the remaining two trees in Yamuna should be trimmed before the monsoon.

In the Wimbledon Championship, the number one seed, Djokovic who has gained a reputation as a player who cannot lose, took a nasty tumble as big serving Sam Query aced him out of the court. Djokovic was playing some great tennis alongside some inexplicably unfocused dross. He was distracted for worryingly long stretches until the unfancied Sam Query relieved him of his discomfort by showing him the door. Djokovic has this uncanny ability to wear down the opponent with his relentless returning game but against Query he could not get the racket to the ball to bring his A-game into play. Despite this loss, Djokovic will notch his name amongst the greatest who played the game, although I am not fond of his style of tennis. Gone are the artists of the game like Rod Laver, John McEnroe, Tony Roche and Ilie Nastase who have been such a joy to watch. In recent times only Roger Federer has come close to recreating that magic.

The propensity to play ear splitting music at functions is gaining ground. I was subject to furious assault on my eardrums on four successive days. One was a sangeet ceremony, the second was a landmark birthday, the third was the inauguration of a library by the local MLC Mr. Saurabh Bharadwaj in DDA apartments and the fourth, a wedding reception. I suspect most people are not aware of the possibility of permanent damage to their ear drums. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has given alarming statistical data of noise induced hearing loss amongst Americans of various age groups. Similar statistics are not available for India but I suspect it would be more considering that the ambient noise in Indian cities is much more than American cities. Noise induced hearing loss can be immediate or it can take a long time to be noticeable. It can be temporary or permanent, and it can affect one ear or both ears. Even if you can’t tell that you are damaging your hearing, you could have trouble hearing in the future, such as not being able to understand other people when they talk, especially on the phone or in a noisy room. Why would anyone subject oneself to such personal harm? Maybe they play music so loud because they can't hear very well if the volume is lower, thereby proving this theory.

The perimeter road has caved in several times in places where trenches were dug to lay the gas pipeline. Repeated repairs have not solved the problem. The initial filling and compacting was not done properly by the contractor. While the expenses for these repairs are not being borne by the Society it has proved to be a nuisance for pedestrians and car owners. In a way it's good that due to heavy rains all the vulnerable areas have got settled while the contractor is still here. Had they completed all the connections and vacated the premises we would have had to get the job done at our cost. Talking of gas pipelines, our civic authorities need a medal for irresponsibility. A PWD worker in Kalkaji, while digging for something damaged IGL's trunk pipeline,  thereby depriving residents of several colonies of much needed cooking gas. While it may have been an excuse for eating out for some, for most it was a nuisance they could do without. It just reinforces one's belief that one should retain one gas cylinder or get an induction cooker for such emergencies.

Amongst the several ways of losing your car, please add one more. Julius Samson of A-201 had given his Volkswagen Jetta for servicing to the authorised service station. When he went to collect the car it had vanished into thin air. The agency washed their hands off and Julius was left to twiddle his thumbs. Apparently, the agency guard spirited away the car. Julius wrote to VW and they have made him an offer which he is considering. The timing was brilliant though. His parking slot in the colony was usurped by the fallen tree which left a big crater.

Deepak Varma of H-208 became the first member in Yamuna to get his freehold papers. Congratulations, Deepak! His nightmarish stories of the murky ways of DDA shows that despite repeated political proclamations to the contrary, things haven't changed. Mr. P. K. K. Nair informs me that several others have got freehold status since. Whilst on the subject it would not be out of place to mention the efforts put in by Mercy Nair and Victor Thomas in preparing various documents required for individuals who are applying for converting their flats to freehold. This is not part of their scope of work. A gratuity box with a slot has been placed in the Society Office where Members who are getting their flats converted could drop their contributions which will be distributed to both the aforementioned office staff.

A new submersible pump of KSB make has been installed and commissioned. Mr. P. K. K. Nair supervised the work. It is working very well and currently it is this pump that is pumping the water.

OBITUARY

Jamuna Sanyal of A-304, expired in the morning of 19th July, 2016. She was ailing. Only about ten days ago she was standing between A&B blocks and planning to go to her flat in the 3rd floor to fetch something. I offered to help but she politely declined. Such a rapid deterioration, I think, even she did not expect as she was enquiring about her gas connection and complained about lack of natural light in her temporary ground floor abode. Fate definitely has dealt a cruel blow to her. Her brother who lives in the US came to perform the last rites. May God give her peace in the other world.

SNIPPETS

Shashvath Arun of G-306 auditioned and was selected for the Government's national campaign on Swachh Bharat. Indeed, a proud moment for him. I am going to make him the monitor for ensuring that the kids of Yamuna do not litter. Shashvath, you are an inspiration for other kids.

****************
Shankar Ananthanarayanan Mahadevan (Sam),  son of Geetha and Ramani Mahadevan (H-102) got engaged  to Vibha, daughter of Bhuvana and S, Chandrashekar of Hyderabad on June 26th, 2016. Sam is working as a Production Supervisor  in Auckland, New Zealand. Vibha  works as  a Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) in Hyderabad. They are getting married in Hyderabad on 11th November, 2016.

******************

Mr. V. Sundaram (a.k.a. Rajan) has moved into A-202 with his wife Bhanu. This couple who had to live separately due to their professional commitments, have decided to get back together, with Bhanu resigning from her HDFC Bank job in Kochi. Rajan is a gemmologist and works for MBJ Group. He plays badminton and loves music. Bhanu writes poems and articles, loves music and is fond of reading. Rajan can be reached on 9810731950 and Bhanu on 9999568779. We welcome them to Yamuna.

Plot for the second biggest Mall in Delhi was auctioned by DDA in conflict with the Master Plan. It is slated to come up in Alaknanda. To know the implications of this decision please see the detailed report on it in the portal.

CALENDAR OF EVENTS UNTIL DECEMBER, 2016



CALENDAR OF EVENTS AUGUST-DECEMBER 2016

DATE
TIME
EVENT
VENUE
15.8.16
9.00 AM
INDEPENDENCE DAY FLAG HOISTING,
BADMINTON COURT


SINGING OF PATRIOTIC SONGS, DISTRIBUTION OF SWEETS





25.8.16
6.30 PM
JANMASHTAMI-VARIETY ENTERTAINMENT & EATS
BADMINTON COURT
10.9.16
7.30 PM
POOKOLAM AND ONAM FEAST
COMMUNITY HALL




24.9.16
6.30 PM
MOVIE SCREENING & POT LUCK DINNER
BADMINTON COURT




8.10.16
6.30 PM
DANDIA, MUSIC AND FOOD EVENING
BADMINTON COURT




11.10.16
4.30 PM
RAMLILA AND BURNING OF RAVAN  EFFIGY  
MAIN LAWN




29.10.16
6.00 PM
DIWALI MELA/JUMBLE SALE/JAM SESSION/RIDES/FOOD
BOTH BADMINTON


FORTUNE TELLING/GAMES AND LOTS MORE
COURTS




30.10.16
6.30 PM
DIWALI ILLUMINATION COMPETITION
BETWEEN THE BLOCKS




1ST -7TH
6.30 PM
BADMINTON & TT TOURNAMENTS
BADMINTON COURT
NOV,16







5.11.16
6.30 PM
QUIZ COMPETITION WITH SUMATHI
BADMINTON COURT




13.11.16
9.00 AM
SPORTS DAY
MAIN LAWN




10.12.16
4.30 PM
ANNUAL DAY-REFRESHMENTS, PRIZE DISTRIBUTION,
MAIN LAWN


VARIETY ENTERTAINMENT AND DINNER





11.12.16
12 NOON
THE GREAT COOKERY CONTEST
BADMINTON COURT




18.12.16
10.30 AM
HERITAGE WALK
FROM A BLOCK GATE




24.12.16
6.00 PM
CHRISTMAS CARNIVAL/CAROL SINGING/WINTER RAMP WALK
BADMINTON COURT


MUSIC/DANCE/FOOD STALLS





31.12.16
MIDNIGHT
CAKE CUTTING AND USHERING IN THE NEW YEAR
COMMUNITY HALL

The Yamuna Chronicle is a monthly newsletter published by The Yamuna Co-operative Group Housing Society, Alaknanda, New Delhi - 110019, India. Editor: Mohan Narayanan (B-002) e-mail:mohan.narayanan7@gmail.com. Phone: 9810153501 URL: www.theyamunachronicle.blogspot.in