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English Literature – Article ☆ Meet my friend Swami Sudarshanam…. ☆ Shri Ajeet Singh, Ex-Director (News) Doordarshan

Shri Ajeet  Singh 

(We present an article ‘Meet my friend Swami Sudarshanam…’ written by Shri Ajeet Singh ji, Ex-Director (News), Doordarshan. We are extremely thankful to Shri Ajeet Singh ji for sharing experience of his friend Mr. Srinivasan Sudarshanam now Swami Sudarshanam while he was AIR’s correspondent in New Delhi who covered reporting of 13/12 attack from inside Parliament.) 

Meet my friend Swami Sudarshanam… : Shri Ajeet Singh ☆

Srinivasan Sudarshanam wanted to be an army officer after doing his B.A. in Literature in Sailam city of Tamilnadu. Medical test held at Roorkee in present day Uttarakhand, failed him.

Living with his sister in New Delhi, he tried for several jobs and got the post of a Public Relations Officer in the Delhi Industrial Development Corporation where he worked for about nine years. In between, he cleared the UPSC examination for the Indian Information Service in 1983 and was posted as a Correspondent in the All India Radio where he worked for over 22 years. Taking voluntary retirement in 2005, feeling that it was getting a routine dull job, Sudarshanam returned to his native Chennai to take up the job that his heart wanted for long. He became a priest in the famous Narsimha temple. Friends now call him Swami Sudarshanam.

“Radio job was interesting and several incidents that I was witness to, stay in my mind”.

(Former Reporter Sudarshanam is a Swami now)

Reporting 13/12 attack from inside Parliament

Asked to elaborate, he listed the terrorist attack on Parliament on the 13th of December in 2001, as the most vivid one.

“It was an attack on the most significant symbol of Indian Republic and democracy. Our brave security people foiled it with a great sacrifice. I shudder to imagine what could have happened if the terrorists had succeeded in entering the Parliament House.

“The Business was as usual in Parliament that day. Senior colleague Sebastian Robert went to cover the Lok Sabha and I went to the Rajya Sabha Press Gallery. At sharp 11 AM the Rajyasabha meeting began. The Opposition did not allow the House to function. Several issues were raised. Some members even went to the well of the House and shouted slogans. The House was adjourned for the day. I rushed to AIR Room inside the Parliament House, to file the development. The same thing happened in the Loksabha and Mr. Robert and myself filed a combined story. It was around 11.20 AM, when we heard a commotion from the ground floor. Rifles firing sounds and security persons running this and that way asking people to get indoors in their rooms. By the time we reached ground floor, the main gate was closed. MPs were running here and there. Fortunately, I heard a Security Officer talking in his walkie-talkie passing the information that terrorists in a car forced their entry at the main gate. When challenged, they fired. Some security persons were killed. Three terrorists got killed. Their attempt to enter the main gate was foiled. Two terrorists were rushing to the Rajyasabha entrance.

I told Mr. Robert and he went to AIR Room to file this initial but unconfirmed report. I followed up the developments.
Fortunately, I met the then Parliamentary Affairs Minister, Mr. Pramod Mahajan, who confirmed the above developments.
But the fate of the two terrorists who rushed to the Rajyasabha entrance was not known. We could revise our story quoting the Minister.
Soon the Delhi Police Commissioner arrived.

He confirmed that two terrorists who rushed to the Rajya Sabha entrance, were also killed by the brave security officers. I was doing the leg job and Robert kept on revising the story.

But another confusion cropped up. Someone was heard shouting that one terrorist managed to enter Parliament and is reportedly on the first floor. All were asked to close their rooms. About ten MPs came to AIR Room and were hiding themselves.

Friends believe me, my honest saying. Even PTI and UNI picked up details from AIR on that day. Soon it was confirmed that all five terrorists were killed in the shootout. Nine security personnel laid down their lives.

All India Radio, organized a day long discussion programme on the event. Myself and S. Robert were asked to participate in the programme. We both participated using Hinglish in the programme, both being Tamilian having just a little speaking knowledge of Hindi. The programme was well appreciated as we were filing the reports from ground zero.

I want to add here one thing. This was for a day only. Our friends who worked in North East, Jammu, Srinagar and in Chandigarh during long drawn violent crises, were constantly working under far greater threats and pressure. We should salute them. Compared to them, our lives were easy with this one-day affair” concluded Sudarshanam emphasising that reporting was quite a difficult job too.

Another coverage that he remembers is the Indian Army operation against the Tamil Tigers of the LTTE in Srilanka.

“I was deputed four times on month long tours to Srilanka. That was very difficult assignment. A newspaper had a headline “Capture Sudarshanam and Robert alive” quoting an LTTE commander’s order to his cadre. Being Tamilian we were considered traitors by them.
I was deputed to cover Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao’s visit to the Swiss resort of Davos for the World Economic Forum. He faced a lot of questions on the economic reforms he was heralding and also those on the Babri Masjid demolition. He fared quite well.

Sudarshanam, a teetotaller, had a once in life experience at Davos. He had to take four pegs of brandy to beat the extreme cold at this snowy resort.

Sudarshanam also visited Germany, China and Mauritius but these were just routine coverages.

“22 years of life in New Delhi was very good except for the fact that I couldn’t pick up fluent Hindi. My friends laughed at my broken Tamilised Hindi, but they enjoyed the vadas and dosas I offered them.

“My aged mother could talk only in Tamil and the mother of my Sikh neighbour only in Punjabi. But both the ladies gelled with each other very well and conversed for hours. When I asked my mother what she talked to the Punjabi lady, she only said that she was a good woman.
Back in Chennai, Sudarshanam did what he longed for life. He became a priest in the Narsimha temple.

Sudarshanam lost his wife Gita last year. He has no children of his own. He performs the temple duties from 6 to 10 AM. He gives religious education to about 40 children of the families living in the Guru Paradise Apartments. They are in 6 to 16 years of age and come in four batches age-wise between 4 and 8 PM.

“I was thinking of moving to an old age home after the passing away of my wife. Neighbours assured me of all help and I had to drop that idea.

“This is the best period of my life. I get a lot of bliss. Neighbours give me a lot of respect and help me if I need it ever, says he.

How is your fellow traveller and colleague of long years, Mr. Robert?

“He too has become a priest. He is a long white-robbed Christian Father in some Church.

We both had a long laugh. Life is a wonderful journey. Sudarshanam and Robert are now travellers of their respective religious journey. May be their directions are different, but goal is the same. Some glimpses of spiritual experiences in this final phase of their lives.

Long live my friends.

©  Shri Ajeet Singh 

Ex Director (News) Doordarshan

Mo. – 9466647037

≈  Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Stories ☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 19 – Dhanvantari ☆ Mr. Ashish Kumar

Mr Ashish Kumar

(It is difficult to comment about young author Mr Ashish Kumar and his mythological/spiritual writing.  He has well researched Hindu Philosophy, Science and quest of success beyond the material realms. I am really mesmerized.  I am sure you will be also amazed.  We are pleased to begin a series on excerpts from his well acclaimed book  “Samudramanthanam” .  According to Mr Ashish  “Samudramanthanam is less explained and explored till date. I have tried to give broad way of this one of the most important chapter of Hindu mythology. I have read many scriptures and take references from many temples and folk stories, to present the all possible aspects of portrait of Samudramanthanam.”  Now our distinguished readers will be able to read this series on every Saturday.)    

Amazon Link – Samudramanthanam 

☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 19 – Dhanvantari ☆ 

Now the churning of ‘Kshirasāgara’ is looking balance and both the teams doing it again with full enthusiasm with lots of hopes.

Pushing and pulling of Vasuki Naga over mount Mandara is going on. Descend air is blowing all around. That air is giving both the teams new and fresh energy. After sometime a dark smoke start appearing behind that gentle air. Smoke with poison touch which makes to take breath uncomfortable.

In between that dark smoke some figure started appearing in sky. It was looking like someone of black color is coming. Then a face of Buffalo was visible and all Sura and Asura start shivering from fear. The God of dharma and death ‘Yumraj’ was coming from south direction.

Indira started thinking in his mind, “I think Yamraj is coming to punish me”

Then ‘Indira’ started chanting name of Lord Vishnu silently.

Yamraj sitting over his Buffalo came near Indira stopped there and then moved forward. Face of Yamraj was looking like he is firing from anger.

Then Yamraj reaches where Spatrishis and other sage standing. Yamraj bow down his head in front of them due to respect and then all sage given him blessings. Then Yamraj moved further and his Buffalo stopped just in front of Lord Brahma and he said with folded arms, “My father please accept my salutation”

Lord Brahma said, “my blessings with you, keep following your Dharam. Yamraj your presence here is not a good sign. Please tell me reason of your arrival because all Sura and Asura are looking lifeless due to your fear”

Yamraj said, “Brahma, my father from past many years neither Devtas nor Danvas are doing their job, due to which life is disturbed on earth, because of which people whose life is not completed dyeing and those whose life is completed not dying because all Sura are here for which our Yamdooth, messenger of Yamraj have to kill them. I am very confused. So, I have decided to take all these Sura and Asura to ‘Yamloka’ otherwise you tell me some solution of my problem because currently I am unable to do my duty for which I have to face its result as law of karma. My restless is increasing with each passing moment”

Brahma said, “my son Yamraj all this is Maya of Narayana and only he can give relief from your mind turmoil.

Then Yamraj started doing pronounce name of Lord Vishnu with close eyes. Soon Lord Vishnu appeared in front of Yamraj with smile.

Then Lord Vishnu said, “Yamraj, nature is not permanent, in one or other aspect its keeps changing every time and evaluation of nature is basic requirement to sustain any society for long time. Sometimes we have to accept small losses for the period of some time to get long term advantages. The final outcome of this churning of ‘Kshirasāgara’ is for all the lives of earth. Don’t you worry we will pause time for human so that their karma will not effect. Soon a very special god will emerge from this ocean who will help people to cure them from disease and any kind of suffering. And from today person who lit Diya at south direction of home will not face sudden death of himself/ herself and their family. That Diya will be called yam Dipkam, candle of Yamraj and this day will be called Yam Triyodashi or Yam Deepam”

© Ashish Kumar

New Delhi

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Stories ☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 18 – Kamadhenu ☆ Mr. Ashish Kumar

Mr Ashish Kumar

(It is difficult to comment about young author Mr Ashish Kumar and his mythological/spiritual writing.  He has well researched Hindu Philosophy, Science and quest of success beyond the material realms. I am really mesmerized.  I am sure you will be also amazed.  We are pleased to begin a series on excerpts from his well acclaimed book  “Samudramanthanam” .  According to Mr Ashish  “Samudramanthanam is less explained and explored till date. I have tried to give broad way of this one of the most important chapter of Hindu mythology. I have read many scriptures and take references from many temples and folk stories, to present the all possible aspects of portrait of Samudramanthanam.”  Now our distinguished readers will be able to read this series on every Saturday.)    

Amazon Link – Samudramanthanam 

☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 18 – Kamadhenu ☆ 

As ‘Kamadhenu’ first glimpse is visible to outer world people. All Sura, Asura, sages even Lord Brahma feel that they are fed with sweet milk and felt very satisfied. Even Suras who lost their consciousness, wake up and say to Indira “O! king what a taste of milk which we have drunk. Now we are feeling very energetic and can-do churning for many Yugas”

Lord Brahma said, “O! mother All the gods are residing in your body.  Your four legs are the four Vedas; your horns are the triune gods Brahma, me (tip), Vishnu (middle) and Shiva (base); your eyes are the sun and moon gods, your shoulders the fire-god Agni and the wind-god Vayu and your legs the Himalayas. I request you mother that you will keep feeding your children as you have done right now. Currently, hunger of Sura is end but Saptarishis and others are preparing to do a great yajna to complete this churning of ocean ‘Kshirasāgara’ without any restriction. So please help them to provide pure milk to make ghee for yajna. Even from today onwards you will remain with Saptarishis, because they and other sage always keep doing yajnas for which your milk will work as ‘amrita’. The people who will do your protection will be called Gaurkha or Gorakshak and a place where sage will keep you called Gokula. Today will be celebrated as day of cow called ‘Gao Dwadasi’. You will also be called Surbahi – the smell of earth.

Now Sura and Asura started churning again.

© Ashish Kumar

New Delhi

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature – Article ☆ BSF Day – Life on the edge for BSF wives…. ☆ Shri Ajeet Singh

Shri Ajeet Singh

(We present an article ‘Life on the edge for BSF wives….’ on the eve of  BSF Day – 1st December written by Shri  Ajeet  Singh ji, Director (News), Doordarshan. We are extremely thankful to Shri Ajeet Singh ji for sharing his experience while he was AIR’s correspondent in Jammu and Kashmir for over 19 years.) 

☆ BSF Day – 1st December ☆ Sometime in Srinagar: Life on the edge for BSF wives…☆

(Writer Shri Ajeet Singh ji was AIR’s correspondent in Jammu and Kashmir for over 19 years.  He retired as Director of News, Doordarshan, Hisar.)

Sometime in Srinagar:

Mrs Ekka suddenly held me by both my wrists and asked me to tell the truth as I, standing at the door, conveyed her a message that she should get ready to go to the army Base Hospital in Srinagar and a vehicle was on the way to pick her up.

Her husband, BSF Assistant Commandant Ekka who lived in the room next to mine in the Safe Zone declared Tourist Reception Centre, had been injured in an encounter with militants in Chhanpora locality of the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir state. Message had been received on my landline phone as I only had the facility on the second floor of the tourist hotel under security.

She feared the worst. I told her that I had been to the hospital for a coverage and met her husband who was slightly injured in the arm and he was fine after some sort of first aid only. She didn’t believe me.

“Why didn’t he come home if it was an injury requiring first aid only?

Please tell me the truth”, she pleaded and clinched both my wrists as if not to let me go without telling her the truth.

I had not been to the hospital. Ekka’s officer Deputy Commandant Garg had told me on phone about the incident and requested me to bring Mrs Ekka to the hospital. He also cautioned me to ensure that Mrs Ekka was not scared as I conveyed the information.

We locked our rooms and came downstairs where a vehicle waited for us. It was a 20-minute journey. Mrs Ekka was tense but silent.  She almost continuously stared at me as if to read my face or eyes to know whether or not I had told her the truth about her husband.

This scared me too from inside. What if Ekka’s injuries were grave or he was ….. no more.

She suddenly turned to the driver and asked him if he had seen her husband.

“He is ok madam. Deputy sahib told me”, he said.

That seemed of not much relief to Mrs. Ekka.

Soon we were in the ward where Ekka was admitted. He was cheerful and welcomed his wife. ” Hey! You need not have bothered. See it is only a minor injury near the elbow”.

Trying to control her tears, Mrs Ekka saw the injured arm and turned her face towards the wall as if praying for the safety of her husband. Deputy Commandant Garg told us that Ekka had killed a militant in the encounter.

She looked at me this time with folded hands.

“Thanks and sorry. Like army wives, we the BSF wives too live constantly praying for our husbands and fearing the worst. It is a life always on the edge”.

I saw this and much more first hand about 25 years ago as the correspondent of All India Radio Srinagar.

I remembered it on the BSF Day that falls on the first of December.

Kashmir is still in turmoil.

©  Shri Ajeet Singh 

Ex Director (News) Doordarshan

Mo. – 9466647037

≈  Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature – Article ☆ World Television Day ☆ Shri Ajeet Singh

Shri Ajeet Singh

(We present an article ‘World Television Day’ on the eve of  World Television Day – 21st November  written by Shri  Ajeet  Singh ji, Director (News), Doordarshan. We are extremely thankful to Shri Ajeet Singh ji for this informative and well researched article based on his experience.) 

☆ World Television Day ☆ Shri Ajeet Singh☆ 

This day let’s ponder over the impact television now has on our personal, familial, social and political life.

Not going into the well known history of this audio visual medium, suffice to say that it has gradually changed our lives in a big way. It cut down our time for Radio, cinema and print media significantly.

TV started making real impact in America and European countries in fifties of the last century. The first Presidential debates in 1960 between John Kennedy and Richard Nixon marked the moment that the television had arrived.

In India the impact came in early eighties through 9th Asian Games, introduction of colour TV, and then the serial saga through Hum Log, Ramayan and Mahabharat. By mid-nineties came the private television and the Doordarshan started losing the race both in entertainment segment of serials and the news segment. It soon became a mad race even among the private networks, each trying to beat the other through sensational contents and even by rigging the TRPs for a bigger pie in the advertisement revenue.

The cut throat race continues.

My personal feeling is that television has in this process made us passive consumers of its contents. It has even polarised the community on communal and political lines.

There was a time when films united the country. Those made Hindi as the most spoken and understood language. In its early days, Television too performed that role through its films and film-based programmes and live sports especially cricket.

In the last decade or so, television news seems to have become more popular than serials. Of 800 odd television channels in India, about half cater to news. Prime time is a big circus on most of the news channels.

We remain passive consumers.

Will television continue to play overwhelming or even dominant role in entertaining the masses and as educator and information provider?

I don’t think so. In last about five years or so,

A new technology has brought on the scene a new mass media called social media. It has already started impacting the television. Now I devote equal, if not more, time to social media than the television. The smartphone technology has made television as just one of its many adjuncts. There is also smart television and OTT content, all available on smartphones. Television gave us what a channel thought the best for us. Of course, we could change channels but we could not always have the contents we specifically wanted. Google on smartphones has widened the area of our choice astronomically.

Social media has made every citizen a reporter. He won’t stand sermonising of different hues any more. He has a take on anything and everything. That makes social media a better two-way communication medium. Its reach and audience are huge. Facebook has 180 crore subscribers. If people only make a country, then Facebook is the biggest country of the world.

Social media gives rise to communities and identities of big and small sizes that television and other mass media sought to rollover.

This way social media makes us active and discreet consumers of contents. This is a major point social media scores over television.

These are my stray thoughts on this World Television Day.

We have a galaxy of television watchers in our group.

Will they enlighten us ? Waiting to hear.

 

©  Shri Ajeet Singh 

Ex Director (News) Doordarshan

Mo. – 9466647037

≈  Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Stories ☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 16 – Ear  Rings ☆ Mr. Ashish Kumar

Mr Ashish Kumar

(It is difficult to comment about young author Mr Ashish Kumar and his mythological/spiritual writing.  He has well researched Hindu Philosophy, Science and quest of success beyond the material realms. I am really mesmerized.  I am sure you will be also amazed.  We are pleased to begin a series on excerpts from his well acclaimed book  “Samudramanthanam” .  According to Mr Ashish  “Samudramanthanam is less explained and explored till date. I have tried to give broad way of this one of the most important chapter of Hindu mythology. I have read many scriptures and take references from many temples and folk stories, to present the all possible aspects of portrait of Samudramanthanam.”  Now our distinguished readers will be able to read this series on every Saturday.)    

Amazon Link – Samudramanthanam 

☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 16 – Ear  Rings ☆ 

On bright evening of Kartika maas, Krishna paksha Asthmi or Ahoi asthmai evening, churning was on decent pace.

A servant came in between, offered  salute to Brahma, and all the sages, and also to Suras and Asura and made himself to stand comfortably at the place from where he can communicate to all perfectly. Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva are not actually all time physically present at the site of churning of ocean means at ‘Kshirasāgara’ but they keep coming as and when required. Only Brahma from Trimurtis was present there all the time.

So that servant said, “All the holder and sustainer of universe, two mothers, mother of Sura or Devtas or Adityas ‘Aditi’ and mother of Asuras or Danavas or Rakshasas ‘Diti’ wants to see this churning. So, they sent  me to take permission of Lord Brahma, his husband great kashyapa rishi and all other great sages including Saptarishis”

Lord Brahmas said, “it will be delightful for both the mothers to watch their children playing game of churning of ocean together although both mothers sons have different qualities just opposite to each other. And also, both mothers will help us to make peace when Sura and Asura do arguement or fight together. Our permission to bring them here with all respect but most important is permission of their husband sage ‘kashyapa’ is required.”

Sage Kashyapa said, “My father Brahma, you desire and command is order for me. Indeed, I was thinking over it to invite both the mothers. O! Noble servant go to the gate of palace of both mothers Devi ‘Aditi’ and Devi ‘Diti’ and tell their females servants about the command of Lord Brahma and our desire”

After some time two seats  were placed for two mothers on which ‘Aditi’ the mother of Sura and ‘Diti’ the mother of Asura were now watching the great churning of ocean ‘Kshirasāgara’.

Now both the team started churning again. This time ‘Indira’ and ‘Bali’ doing with proper tameness. Main focus of both the kings is keep in mind that their mothers and common father were watching them.

Soon a sound like some metal collided with rock came and both ‘Bali’ and ‘Indira’ fell from their place. Other Sura moved forward to hold ‘Indira’ similarly some Asura ran fast to hold ‘Bali’. After making themselves comfortable over a place of rock at one side of ‘Kshirasāgara’ both ‘Indira’ and ‘Bali’ saw that a big ring of most precious metal and gems are fixed and jam around their foots.

One Sura from Indira side and one Asura from Bali side hold legs of Indira and Bali respectively and remove those rings from their foot and kept them aside.

Bali asked from Lord Brahma, “Brahma are these two rings also the outcomes of churning or just came at my and Indira foots like a waste of ocean”

Before a single word is said by Brahma soon an image appears from ocean. It was the god of ‘Kshirasāgara’ himself, who arrived from ocean for special propose. ‘Kshirasāgara’ saluted to all the respected people present there and then said, “All of you, those two rings are our gift to the Goddess ‘Aditi’. We want to donate them to her.”

As ‘Kshirasāgara’ said these words soon those two rings fly in sky and reached  near goddess ‘Aditi’ ears. ‘Aditi’ slightly down her head to accept both the rings. Then both the rings go and fixed on the ears.

It was insult for ‘Diti’ that god of ‘Kshirasāgara’ given ear rings to ‘Aditi’ and not to ‘Diti’. She left that place with anger and behind her Aditi also left that place.

Then ‘Bali’ said from anger, “this ocean has done insult of my mother. I’ll will burn it and make it lifeless. Also till now this ocean is doing partiality and we haven’t received any gift from him as an outcome of churning. We are accepting all challenges and making all our efforts to make this churning successful but it seems to me that this churning is only to give advantages to Sura and Indira only”

After saying this ‘Bali’ do concentration and soon a very deadly weapon come at the hand of him. He was about to throw that over ocean ‘Kshirasāgara’ no one is able to stop him. All People present there go to panic.

Soon a hand stops the hand of ‘Bali’ to throw that deadly weapon over ocean.

© Ashish Kumar

New Delhi

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Stories ☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 15 – Varunai ☆ Mr. Ashish Kumar

Mr Ashish Kumar

(It is difficult to comment about young author Mr Ashish Kumar and his mythological/spiritual writing.  He has well researched Hindu Philosophy, Science and quest of success beyond the material realms. I am really mesmerized.  I am sure you will be also amazed.  We are pleased to begin a series on excerpts from his well acclaimed book  “Samudramanthanam” .  According to Mr Ashish  “Samudramanthanam is less explained and explored till date. I have tried to give broad way of this one of the most important chapter of Hindu mythology. I have read many scriptures and take references from many temples and folk stories, to present the all possible aspects of portrait of Samudramanthanam.”  Now our distinguished readers will be able to read this series on every Saturday.)    

Amazon Link – Samudramanthanam 

☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 15 – Varunai ☆ 

It is bright morning of Kartik month Kirshna paksha fourth Tithi means day of Karva Chautha. Gentle breeze was blowing over ‘Kshirasāgara’ and churning was going on. Asuras were again doing it with hope that gems which will now emerge surely deserve them because till now they have got nothing.

Slowly smell of that place started to tuning passionate than charming. With each passing time Suras and Asuras started vacillating here and there. Then started dancing. They have lost their grip over Naga Vasuki body, from which his body fell over ocean liquid with sound of Chappak, splash. All Suras and Asuras got wet from this sudden splash of ‘Kshirasāgara’ liquid.

They all were dancing when saw a beautiful damsel emerge from ‘Kshirasāgara’. She was looking so pretty. Her body color was dark transparent brown. She has smiling face. Her ornaments were of white and light color. She has light green color hairs long enough and having yellowish eyes. Intoxication was flowing from her eyes. All Devtas and Danvas means Sura and Asura were losing their senses after seeing this beauty.

King of Asura ‘Bali’ ask from that beautiful lady, “O! divine beauty who are you? Are you incarnation of Goddess Gauri or Kali? or essence of this ‘Kshirasāgara’. We all Sura and Asura losing our sense after seeing your beauty. Please give us your identity”

That beautiful lady start saying, “King of Asura and all of you I am the goddess of toxin. My name is ‘Sura’ because I am the essence of Sura or demigods to whom you are doing this churning of ‘Kshirasāgara’. Actually, I am root of Suras desires and their ego which make them arrogant. Due to which they started thinking that all the affairs are run by them and not by Lord Vishnu. I am goddess of all the liquids who makes people lose their senses. I am in wine and all types of alcohol. Do you know the meaning of name of ‘Indira’? it means one whose Indriyas, senses are always engaging outer world towards different subjects. I am responsible to make Soma, the favorite drink of ‘Indira’ toxify which makes loose of control of ‘Indira’ over his senses. From many years you all are doing this churning of ‘Kshirasāgara’ because of it all your desires which is actually most toxin in this world come into liquid of ocean and I was born out of it. I have basic incarnation of Goddess Kali. Because I was born from the properties of Sura so got name ‘Sura’ means opposite of Asura”

King of Asura Bali said, “O! goddess you are born from the toxins of Suras or Devtas so you must be need to come at our side”

Goddess Sura said, “Great Bali, Asuras are all having dominating tamas Guna or property of nature. And toxin is also of tamas quality so if I’ll come your side then it will increase your negativity and restlessness”

Lord Brahma said, “I think best companion for Goddess ‘Sura’ is Devta of salty water Varuna. What you all have to say?”

Before Indira the custody of whole water of universe including sweet and rain water was in the hand of ‘Varuna’ and also at that time the king of heaven was ‘Varuna’, but Indira has done some trick to make Lord Brahma believe that Indira will be better king of Devtas than ‘Varuna’ so the kingdom of heaven as well as rights of Rain and sweet water was given to ‘Indira’. from that day ‘Varuna’ like to enjoy company of Asura more than Sura.

So, Bali said to Brahma, “you are right. I think Varuna will be good husband for goddess ‘Sura’”

Then ‘Varuna’ accepted goddess of toxins, wine and all types of alcohols ‘Sura’ as his wife.

Brahma said, “from today’s onward Goddess Sura will be called ‘Varunai’.

Asura are still sad and little angry because till date they haven’t got anything out of churning of ocean ‘Kshirasāgara’.

© Ashish Kumar

New Delhi

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Stories ☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 14 – Chandra ☆ Mr. Ashish Kumar

Mr Ashish Kumar

(It is difficult to comment about young author Mr Ashish Kumar and his mythological/spiritual writing.  He has well researched Hindu Philosophy, Science and quest of success beyond the material realms. I am really mesmerized.  I am sure you will be also amazed.  We are pleased to begin a series on excerpts from his well acclaimed book  “Samudramanthanam” .  According to Mr Ashish  “Samudramanthanam is less explained and explored till date. I have tried to give broad way of this one of the most important chapter of Hindu mythology. I have read many scriptures and take references from many temples and folk stories, to present the all possible aspects of portrait of Samudramanthanam.”  Now our distinguished readers will be able to read this series on every Saturday.)    

Amazon Link – Samudramanthanam 

☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 14 – Chandra ☆ 

 All the activities over earth are going very normal and as routine because all the demigods and Asura, Rakshasa were busy in the churning of ‘Kshirasāgara’.

Now both teams started churning again with full enthusiasm and passion because they feel and advised by great saptarishi that they are almost at halfway of churning and almost all hurdles in churning is over and now difficult part is left behind.

Bright very bright white color rays started visible from ocean. It was like all the white color of ‘Kshirasāgara’ combined and concentrated on single location. It is like magic for the members of both the teams. Team of Sura and team of Asura felt very good from inside. A sudden feel of energy makes happy Sura and Asura. They all were energetic now.

Sage Atri said, “O! this is our son moon who has left this world. It is good sign for humanity. He started shine again on day of Sharad Purnima”

Bali said to Atri, “Nobel soul, can you please describe us whole Leela, play of moon birth and life and also reason of his disappearing”

Atri said, ”Tirmurtis, the three supreme Gods Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva disguised as monks, came to test Anasuya, my wife and demanded that she feed them milk from her breasts. The great Anasuya with her spiritual powers got to know the truth and turned those three gods into babies and feed them as they desired. Immensely pleased and impressed with Anasuya, Lords of the universe blessed her to have great children. Shiva’s blessing caused the birth of Durvasas rishi, Vishnu’s blessing resulted in the birth of Dattatreya, and Brahma’s boon caused the Moon’s birth.

My son moon was then worshipped by all the celestials. He later married the twenty-seven daughters of Daksha, the father in law of Lord Shiva also and they were none other than twenty-seven constellations or nakshatras. Out of his twenty-seven wives Moon preferred only Rohini, and always remained with her. Other twenty-six sisters pleaded Moon to spend equal time with all of them. But Moon ignored them and with no option left these twenty-six sisters complained to their father, Daksha, who tried twice to reason with Moon, his son in law, but Moon ignored it as well. Daksha then lost his temper and cursed the Moon to suffer with consumption.

Every day the Moon started to wane, losing his glow and no remedy could cure him. The gods also got alarmed at the possibility life on Earth will be affected without Moon, approached Daksha and asked him to modify his curse so that life continues on Earth. Daksha then modified his curse on condition that Moon has to spend one day with each of his wives and that will affect him for fourteen days and in next fourteen days he will gain back his form. Thus, the Moon now waxes and wanes in cycle of twenty-seven days and he visits each of his wife once a month, for one day. Moon had no children by his twenty-seven wives, but he has four sons by another wife, named Manohara. But most famous son of the Moon is the planet Mercury. For this moon fall on depression and lost his luster and shine. Then he decided to do scarify and concentration at the base of ‘Kshirasāgara’. Now his ardor is competed and now he is emerging as an outcome of this churning with more brightness, energy and calmness in this day of Sharad Purnima. Which is start season of winters in north hemisphere”

© Ashish Kumar

New Delhi

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Article ☆ Feminism and Voice of Feminist Writers in Indian English Literature; An Analysis ☆ Dr. Rashi Sinha

Dr. Rashi Sinha

(Today we present Dr. Rashi Sinha’s thought provoking article “Feminism and Voice of Feminist Writers in Indian English Literature; An Analysis”.)

Abstract:

Feminism is not a term but a belief that women are strongest creation, and again this is a movement to change the way the world perceives that strength. A movement, against this patriarchal society which talks about inequality between man and woman. In fact, this is an advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of equality and gender both in family as well as in society. However, with development of time, Feminism in India has been established through Indian English literature, though it travelled in three phases (mid 19th, 2nd phase from 1915 to Indian Independence and the 3rd is from post Independence to the running era). The women in India, who were thirsty to break all the barriers to give a full shape to their womanhood, came with their full literary contribution. Today, in Indian English Literature, these feminists writers are successfully projecting the existing social inequality with their different techniques, styles, and trends in their Novels, short stories etc. This paper is well focused on how in Indian English Literature, these feminist writers have dealt with feminism and other gender issues to support the feminist goals of establishing and defending their equal rights in every nook and corner of the society and families too.

Keywords: Feminism, womanhood, feminist movement, social inequality

The term Feminism, has a wide philosophical theory. Hence, it is difficult to identify in a single sentence. In fact, feminism defines how women are accepted as equal in all respect to men in sharing, defines how women are accepted as equal in all respect to men in sharing equality in every rights, opportunities and responsibilities. So, in literary terms, feminism is identified as the liberation of woman from the  social taboos and the dominance of male.

Feminism is nothing but a concept of Womanhood which talks how in this patriarchal society, women are forced to, behave traditionally in a subdued manner. In its history, this womanhood  has travelled in three phases of classifications, from the awareness of women’s rights to the protest for this and then in the final phase, to get individual identity; thus, going revolutionary against the established patriarchal society.

Those who fought for these rights vociferously, were called the feminists. These feminists gave rise to feminist writers in Indian English literature. With the advent of these feminist writers like Anita Desai, Kamala Markanday, Kamala Das, Nayantara Sahgal, Jhabwala, Rama Mehta, Gita Mukherjee, Jhumpa Lahiri and Shashi Deshpande, including male feminist writers like R. K. Narayana, Khushwant Singh and Amitabh Ghosh etc. these writers have played a vital role in voicing the feminism. They deliberately chose the theme of women sufferings and brilliantly highlighted it through the agony of their female protagonists.

The feminist movement produced feminist fictions, feminist nonfictions and feminist ‘s poetry which created new interests in women’s writing. It also prompted a general revaluation of women’s historical and academic contribution in response to the belief the women’s lives. But their effort, though worthy of  congratulations, has been under presented as are their scholarly interests”.1

The voices of feminism with reference to the work of the feminist Indian English Writers:

Nayantara Sahgal

Nayantara Sahgal often writes on issue of feminism. In her every piece of writing, she sees women as a victim of this traditional and conventional Indian society, where women are engaged in searching their individual identity. As a writer with feminine concern, Miss Sahgal often describes the sufferings of women caused  by man woman relationship in the traditional society of India. “As a writer with feminist concerns, Nayantara Sahgal is a progeny of the tradition where in power itself is defined as Goddess ‘Shanti, a female symbol. Her theme is often combined to the theme of man woman relationship, their marital problems, their  temperament, incompatibility,

the problem arising out of their submissiveness and finally the place  women in society.

As a feminist , she has voiced the women inner and outer sufferings by classifying them into two groups; the one who faces problems in seeking happiness and acceptance in an Orthodox Hindu family and the women belong to the second  group suffers lot to adjust in male dominance. In  “The Day of Shadow”, she gives a sensitive account of  the sufferings of middle aged divorced woman Simrit. By defending the attitude of Som, as a husband. ‘Be tough, Be Winner’s, Sahgal shows how patriarchal attitude is  smashing the woman inside and giving a way to missing link of married life.2

To show women’s inalienable right of freedom, she has not only portrayed many of the characters only but has also used language as a tool of define this. Her, characters such as Simrit, in Shadow, Sarij, Storm in Chandigarh, Rashmi, In the Times Morning and Maya in A Time to Be Happy Sahgal seen deeply concerned with the need of women freedom.

Anita Desai

The writers of many novels, short stories, and children book as a keen observer, miss Desai has explored the problems and chief cause behind the estrangement of the women and their families. In her first novel, Cry, the Peacock, she has very well explained how Maya, the main protagonist felt ignored and oppressed in her family by her practical husband Gautama. In, Voices of  the city, Monisha loneliness and sterility stress of living in a joint family, facing too much traditionalism makes her alienated and aloof in family. In her, next novel  Fire on the mountain, she has tried to explain how a woman is treated as a useful object only. This novel grapples with the theme of women sufferings due to lack of communication and lack of understanding. In this novel, she has well depicted how a woman even after being a center part of family, always engaged in raising the family and discharging the duties of mother, housewife and hostess, but no one cares for her. Even in her own home her entity is ignored. In every creation of her, Desai shows the women characters sufferings from inner psyche. Every characters of her, guided by fear, guilt, aggression, chasing for their individuality and existence in family. Even in many of her stories, a women is given primary importance and her relationship with man, in many cases the relationship with husband is most touched upon

Shashi Deshpande

Shashi Deshpande, Author of many novels, four volumes of short stories and number of children books has very subtly voiced the frustrations of women, generated by the process of oppression and gender discrimination. In family and male centered society. In her  novels like The Dark Holds No Terrors, Roots and the Shadows, That Long Silence, The Binding Vine, A Matter of Time, and Come Up and Be Dead etc. She has explained how women of the age of 70s to till this age are forced to suffer this social taboos, old beliefs and superstitions of the society. By portraying, modern educated and career oriented middle class women she shows the identity denial of women in the traditional, male centered joint families and society. In the plot of her novels, we see a change corresponding to the change in contemporary society. In describing the plight of women she has told us the height of disaster where in joint family the freedom of woman was confined to a wall by the woman of traditional n conventional temperament. The women consciousness of Deshpande has not come by reading but from their Self-experience, once to consider herself feminist she admits:

“I know I have no doubt at all in saying that  I am a feminist. In my life mean but not consciously as a novelist. I must also say that my feminism has come to me very slowly, very gradually and mainly out of my own thinking and experiences and feelings. I started  writing first and only then discovered my feminism”.3

Kamla Markanday

This brilliant, post-independent, feminist writer has given a bold attempt in giving voice to the disappointment and sufferings of women, “Kamala Markanday represents the beginning of early feminist aspirations in Indian English Writing. The Primary enquiries of modern feminism try to describe the strength of other sex. The feminists describe woman as a one half of the sky. This ideology is revolving because it is against status quo”.4  In revealing the early roots of the secondary status of the women of the country, she portrayed the protagonist like Rukmani Mira, Premala, Nalini, Lalitha and Sarojini etc. In searching the self assertion and self-affirmation, her heroine of these novels; like, Some Inner Fury, Possession, A Silence of Desire, A Handful of Rice, Two Virgins and Nectar in a Sieve, travel a lot from self -denial to self-assertion.

Conclusion

These feminists of India have raised their voices to show the sufferings of women at  this male centered society. These feminists have shown how the traditional roles of ‘women in society’s and ‘women in family’ bring frustrations in their lives. By explaining the helplessness of inner psyche of the protagonists, these writers say, how the  situation of a woman is set on a paradox, because at the one hand, a woman is at the peak of  the success, climbing the ladder of it, but on the other hand at home she is mutely tolerating denial and rejections. The feminists have justified their role in both ways, as they have chosen the theme of feminists and as a technique handled this very beautifully too. They have fully justified to unmask the, instances of social exploration, revolt and violence of any age of the women in society which left incredible imprint on the readers like us.

References

  1. /ab Bain Virginia; Clements Patricia Grunfy :Isobel(1990) The Feminist Companion to Literature in English Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present. New Haven: Yale University press pp. Vii ISBN78 0-300-04854-4.
  2. Asnani Shyam M. Portrayal of Man-Woman Relationship in the Novels of Nayantara Sahgal. Kakatiya Journal of English Studies 3-1(1978) ;151-160-priat
  3. Sue Dickman, “In Conversation: Sue Dickman With Indian Woman Writers”; The Book Review, Vo 19,No.4April (1995), p. 32
  4. “New Light on Women in English, Vol iv, p. 8

 

© Dr. Rashi Sinha 

Nawada, Bihar

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈




English Literature ☆ Stories ☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 13 – Sharanga ☆ Mr. Ashish Kumar

Mr Ashish Kumar

(It is difficult to comment about young author Mr Ashish Kumar and his mythological/spiritual writing.  He has well researched Hindu Philosophy, Science and quest of success beyond the material realms. I am really mesmerized.  I am sure you will be also amazed.  We are pleased to begin a series on excerpts from his well acclaimed book  “Samudramanthanam” .  According to Mr Ashish  “Samudramanthanam is less explained and explored till date. I have tried to give broad way of this one of the most important chapter of Hindu mythology. I have read many scriptures and take references from many temples and folk stories, to present the all possible aspects of portrait of Samudramanthanam.”  Now our distinguished readers will be able to read this series on every Saturday.)    

Amazon Link – Samudramanthanam 

☆ Weekly Column – Samudramanthanam – 13 – Sharanga ☆ 

Churning of ‘Kshirasāgara’ was continue from long time. Naga Vasuki is feeling tired now. Now his body movement was losing synchronization with efforts and directions of Sura and Asura.

At the other end mount Mandara was also feeling pain in its body some creaks also start appeared over its skin.

A sound of something like big rock break come and a part which is large in length side started separating from mount Mandara vertically.

At the very same time Naga Vasuki started losing its upper body skin called exuviae (it is very special property of snakes and some other insects).

The breaking part of mount Mandara and Vasuki’s upper skin combined and took a shape of bow. Yes, the mount Mandara sharp long slightly bent in between making its limbs and skin of Vasuki Naga made its bow string. That biggest bow of the world started falling in ‘Kshirasāgara’. All Sura and Asura started running here and there to save themselves from that falling bow.

The Bow fall over ‘Kshirasāgara’ with high sound and from that force, liquid splash from ‘Kshirasāgara’ raise above and fall over northeast and southeast part of earth and created north and south poles.

Now situation was difficult, all Sura and Asura combined together and started thinking that how to remove this biggest bow from ‘Kshirasāgara’? So that churning can be started again.

First, many Suras tried to hold that but no one got success. Then king of Sura ‘Indira’ come to pick that bow. He tried with his whole strength but was unable to move that from its position.

Then Bali come to join Indra but they didn’t got success. At the end all Sura and Asura combined together to pick and throw that bow away but all efforts were waste.

© Ashish Kumar

New Delhi

≈ Blog Editor – Shri Hemant Bawankar/Editor (English) – Captain Pravin Raghuvanshi, NM ≈