A walk in the evening.

SUMANA SAHA

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The cultured celebrate her as the city of joy.

The evenings here, they say, bubble with life.

Yet I see no destination in the eyes of the men about.

Am I the much hated cynic blind to the value of the animated bursts of infinite passion,

Manifested in a sea of humanity?

Or are these faces without features a mere product of my imagination,

Rather the lack of it? I see faces, lifeless and dumb,

Celebrating a party that was long over.

I see evening shops and offices shuttering down,

Fire used to seek blessings and protection.

Is there anything left to be protected?

Can anything be protected?

Cars honk, autos abuse, buses screech;

Men are silent…and safe. Time creeps….

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OATH OF SACRIFICE

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It’s the 70th Birthday of Indian Independence! We didn’t even realize that this much days are gone, did we? Then what had happened in the past that made us dependent and independent? Well, there is a deep, enthusiastic and heartening tale of this auspicious day. Then let’s go into the flashback, recall the names, remind those incidents and reverberate the slogans of our heroes again on this Independence day!

Once upon a time, European countries like Britain, France, Portugal were having a peaceful trading in our country. They tried to take control of India in various ways, but only British succeeded. It turned on their greediness as the ruling Mughal Emperor – Akbar died in the 17th century. The political instability rose and the British took advantage of it. Through the medium of war, they managed to snatch many regions, and then the whole nation.

 

Some of the massive Battles:

• Battle of Plassey, West Bengal (1757)

• Anglo-Mysore Conflict, Karnataka (1799)

• Maratha War, Maharashtra (1818)

• Anglo-Sikh War, Punjab (1849)

 

British Governance:

British governance had ill-effects on Farmers, Artisans, Adivasis, Fakirs and Soldiers. Due to exploitation, the discontent finally exploded in the form of 1857 mutiny, when Indian soldiers were given cartridges covering with grease of fats of cows and pigs, which was against our religion. The extremist Mangal Pandey shot the British officer, and the revolt began.

 

Well, the Britishers were smart enough as they implemented the ‘Divide & Rule’ technique to bisect the Hindu-Muslim bond. This led to the emergence of ‘Muslim League’ later in 1906.

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Although Britishers were exploiting, they started Railways and other transport, mills, technology and most importantly – Western Education. Now, Indians took advantage of this and realized the necessity of revolution in the backwardness of Indian society.

 

The Beginning of Renaissance:

~ Women reform: Raja Ram Mohan Roy

~ Girls’ & Dalits’ school: Mahatma Phule

~ Caste discrimination reform: G.G Agarkar

~ Growth of Literature and Science:

Mahadev Ranade, Rabindranath Tagore, C.V.Raman – Nobel Prize winners

 

Patriotic Perception:

In 1885, Indian National Congress was established. It helped to create political awakening and cultivate patriotic values. The extremist leaders like Lokmanya Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, Lala Lajpat Rai led the nation in an aggressive way. ‘Swarajya majha janmasidhha hakka ahe ani to me milavnarach!’ (Swaraj is my birth right and I shall have it) were Lokmanya Tilak’s immense words. Through newspapers like Kesari and Maratha, the unity started to develop.

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Bengal Partition:

Showing the cause of inconvenience for administration, British decided to do the partition of Bengal state in 1905. The hidden evil purpose was to divide the Hindus and Muslims of Bengal. Citizens strongly opposed the decision through agitations. 16th October 1905 was considered the ‘National Mourning Day.’

 

Division of Viewpoints:

There were some leaders who had the opinion to deal the issue with peace while some had the fire bursting out in them. The division of leaders – ‘Moderates’ and ‘Extremists’ resulted in a new concern for unity.

 

Mahatma Gandhi:

After the death of Tilak, now the barrister from South Africa, Mahatma Gandhi was given the responsibility of freedom struggle to make it reach to the peak of Independence. Through the extreme new ideas and values of Non-violence and Satyagraha, he managed to reunite the people and re-pressurize the government.

 

British was never ready to be defeated. They passed ‘Rowlatt Act’ by which the government could arrest any Indian without inquiry. Gandhiji and other leaders were arrested to prevent the patriotic volcano eruption.

 

Jalianwala Baug Massacre, Amritsar (1919):

Public meetings and conferences were banned in Amritsar. In order to protest, a massive contribution was made by 400-500 people in Jallianwala Bagh. General Dyre was ordered to open fire the unarmed people, in which 400 people were killed and 100 got injured.

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Non Co-operation Movement (Aug 1920):

There was no way now that could stop Indians from fighting for their motherland. All government places and things were boycotted. A peaceful procession at Chauri Choura in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh had been fired by British police. A tit for tat, protestants set the police station on fire.

 

Revolutionary Movement (1925):

          Chandrashekhar Azad, Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, Rajguru and other revolutionary fighters planned to take out the treasure from a train in Kakori railway station for the funds for revolutionary work. Shouting the slogan ‘Inquilab Zindabad’ (Long live the revolution), they also conducted bomb blast in court and shot the men in red suit to protest against the unfair laws.

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Dandi March (1930):

To oppose the unjust of taxation on the basic necessity like salt, Mahatma Gandhi along with 78 followers completed the journey of 385 km from Sabarmati Ashram to Dandi in Gujarat.

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Quit India Movement (1942):

England declared Indians as their army for 2nd World War. When asked for Independence in exchange for this, they clearly denied it. The situation started becoming more serious.

Gandhiji appealed to the people,

“Every one of you, from this moment onwards, consider yourself a free man or woman. The Mantra is: ‘Do or Die’. We shall either free India or die in the attempt.”

Massive agitations resulted in the arrest of Congress leaders & more than 60,000 people. Despite this, from school children to old people, all participated. A school boy named Shirishkumar was brutally fired by the police.

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Indian National Army:

The words from Subhash Chandra Bose – ‘Tum Mujhe Khoon Do, Main Tumhe Aazadi Dunga’ (Give me your blood, I will give you freedom) were strong enough to fill the energy in the atmosphere. The powerful magnetism of Freedom struggle motivated the Indian soldiers in Navy and Air force. They also decided to have their nation independent and hence went on strike. Soon British realized that their time was going to end.

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India as an INDEPENDENT NATION (1947):

At midnight hour on 14th August, 1947 i.e on the beginning of the bright day of 15th August 1947, the Flag Hoisting ceremony at Red Fort was celebrated by millions of aspiring Indians along with the sacred souls of martyred freedom fighters. ‘Jana Gana Mana’ written by Rabindranath Tagore was declared the National Anthem of Independent India.

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This motherland has seen many Sacrifices, Revolutions, Patriotism, Unity and Faith.

We Salute the Real Heroes of India, the True Fighters who created a Dream, had the passion to aspire it, the ones who taught us that big things take time to happen but they are worth, and you can achieve it once you have faith and unity. The living legends who were, are and always will be encouraging to every Indian and make them feel proud!

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It’s been a long time and we’re trying our best to make India a developed country. There are certain obstacles of corruption, discrimination and superstition, so let’s take a vow to battle these and make Independent India a ‘Developed Independent India’. So what are you waiting for? Get up and create the magic again!

Pallavi Ekbote

REVIEW: MOHENJO DARO (2016)

5

Harappa and Mahenjo Daro, we knew as the oldest civilization set up in the Indian subcontinent through eternal history lessons from childhood, which got destroyed without leaving a clue about the cause of this destruction, as even modern day technology could not decipher the Indus Script. This film is made with an intention to throw some light on the mystery, with loads of imagination mixed with some real historical facts and archeological items. In short, Mohenjo Daro depicts an non-proved reason behind the end of Indus era, combining it with a story of love, lust, revenge and heroism.

Sarman (Hrithik Roshan), a young farmer in Amri, a village, where he does the bravest of works, regularly dreams of an unicorn watching at him with a mysterious music which his paternal aunt often hums. He has some unknown affinity towards the then capital city of this civilization – Mohenjo Daro, and visits there for indigo trading after some strong resistance from his uncle and aunt. Visiting the city, he feels this city is known to him very well, but can’t recall why.

Sarman meets the head priest’s daughter Chaani (Pooja Hegde), who is respected by everyone in the town as the blessing of Ma Sindh (Goddess of Indus River), and falls in love with her. After he saved her from a rage of horses, she also falls for him, but as already the sly dishonest chief of the town, Maham (Kabir Bedi) decided her marriage with his son, a devilish Moonja (Arunoday Singh), the fights begin.

Maham’s greed for gold under Indus River influences the construction of a dam on the river, causing several drying up in the poor villages, and this also counted for a major natural disaster, which is portrayed as the fall of the civilization in this movie in the climax. Can Sarman win his love, can he get all the missing links about his real identity, can he bring an end to the dictatorship of the kingdom, and finally, can he save the common men from the disaster which caused the ruins, currently situated in Larkana, Sindh, Pakistan? Please visit the halls to complete your curiosity.

Although some scenes, VFX works and historical miscues were illogically funny, but I won’t agree with the extra bit of criticism done by some newspapers. Hrithik Roshan did his part very well, and the research and hard work of Ashutosh Gowariker Productions Pvt. Ltd. could provide us enough entertainment, posing in the year 2016 BC! A.R. Rahman was magical with the music, and the shooting sets in Bhuj, Gujarat, were created very efficiently, to complete a perfect reconstructed view based on the ruins of Mahenjo Daro. I’d give a 7 out of 10 to this movie

Just for fun, some destruction and sacrifice scenes were ‘Deja Vu’ regarding to Hollywood chart-buster 2012!

Resham Das