Sunday, October 24, 2010

CNN Heroes 2010 - Narayanan Krishnan

Around two years back, I was watching the programme live on Jaya TV where they introduced Mr. Narayanan Krishnan, a person, a well renowned chef, who dedicated his life to save and supply food for homeless destitute on the road sides of city of Madhurai, Tamil Nadu. And today, fortunately, I happened to see him again on same channel and same programme where the Visu was talking with him - I even skipped the start of today's Korean GP to watch this programme :-(. But it worth it. Towards the end of the programme only, they brought up the point that Mr. Krishnan has been nominated and selected in the last 10 person list for CNN Heroes of the Year, 2010 award. And I was equally delighted as Mr. Krishnan to know this news and he is a well deserved candidate for this award. CNN even had a polling contest in their web site for public to vote for the same. So the immediate thing that I did next was, voted for this great man for CNN heroes award. If you are interested in knowing briefly about these 10 people, then read on..

Narayanan Krishnan:
Nationality: India
Organization: Akshaya Trust, Founded in 2003.
Purpose: Serves food for homeless and destitutes on DAILY basis. He personal prepares food for all of them, personally drive over and feed around 400 destitudes and homeless people on road side of India [Madurai, Tamil Nadu].
CNN Article:

Anuradha Koirala:
Nationality: Nepal
Organization: Maiti Nepal, effective since 1993 - Maiti means, Mother's home.
Active in Nepal and India. Mainly Nepal.
Purpose: Rescue and rehabilitation of girls from sexual abuse and sex traffiking.
CNN Article:

Guadalupe Arizpe De La Vega:
Nationality: Mexico
Oganization: Hospital de la Familia,
Purpose: Treats the affected people of city of Juarez, Mexico - The most murderous city. Provides all required health care facilities to the affected people of this dangerous city.
CNN Article:

Susan Burton:
Nationality: US
Activity: Helps for the rehabilitation of women who gets released from prision. Practically not as simple as how it looks.
CNN Article:

Linda Fondren:
Nationality: US
Activity: Helps people of Vicksburg, Mississippi to fight their Obesity.
CNN Article:

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow:
Nationality: Scotland
Organization: Launched Mary's Meal programme which serves meal for around 4,00,000 children across the world.
Activity: Helps people in-need across the world. Mainly active on Mary's meal programme which is aimed at serving meal for needy children across the world and helps in educating them. Also helps people around when world in case of any natural calamities and also war situations.
CNN Article:

Harmon Parker:
Nationality: US. Active work in Kenya.
Organization: Bridging the Gap.
Activity: Bridge building across mountainous regions of Kenya. Lots of people gets killed when they cross the river in mountainous region of Kenya due to floods. Their lifestyle gets affected a lot when there are floods in these rivers.
Org Website:
CNN Article:

Aki Ra:
Nationality: Cambodian
Activity: About 4-6 million Mines were planted in Cambodia during the war time. Aki Ra himself has planted 4000-5000 mines per month during this war time when he was under such order. Starting from 1993, after realizing what he has done, he started removing the mines across the country. Now with the help of a group of trained people, Aki Ra has cleared around 50000 mines out of 3-5 million still un-discovered. Also helps the affected children with the orphanage that he has started.
CNN Article:

Evans Wadongo:
Nationality: Kenya
Project: Use Solar, Save Lives
Activity: Helps Kenyan poor rurals who had no access to lights. With his project "Use Solar, Save Lives", his solar powered LED lights are distributed to thousands of rurals in Kenya who has no access to light.
CNN Article:

Dan Wallrath:
Nationality: Dan Wallrath
Activity: Builds home for the veterans who were handicapped and left without any aid in wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
CNN Article:

So finally I voted for Mr. Narayanan Krishnan. Why are you still reading this? Go and cast your vote to select the hero of this year..

Btw, just to mention, both Ferrari on the Podium today :-)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Liquor consumption in Kerala

Recently I read an article in a popular magazine which gave an alarming stats on the amount of liquor consumption in a state with highest literacy rate and best quality of life index in India, Kerala. I was really shocked to see those numbers.

Total monetary turn-over for alcohol in Kerala - ~5538 Crore (2009-10) where as the state government's total expenditure for this fiscal is only ~4500 Crore.

Per-capita consumption of alcohol in Kerala 8.4 liters [highest in India following by Punjab with 7.9 liters]. The national average is about 2 liters against global average of 5 liters.

About 20% of hospital admissions in Kerala is related to alcohol related diseases. 40% of road accidents are due to drunken driving. 80% divorce cases is Kerala is due to alcohol abuse. 70% of cases reported to state police is related to alcohol.

The most alarming number is the age when people get initiated to drinking. The national average age for initiation into drinking stands at 19 years where as in Kerala this number is 13.5 years. 7-10% of regular drinkers are under 18 years of age and kids starts drinking at 9 years of age. School children even carry liquors to class rooms and get drunken even when the class is in progress.

It is high time the state government combine with the central government to begin down alcohol addiction in this state. Thanks to Alcoholics anonymous which is already helping the people of the state to come out this addiction to alcohol. More NGO's should come forward to help children to get out this addiction to alcohol.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Remembering Tsunami

5 years and 2 hours to be precise. It was Dec 26 2004, Boxing day hasn't started well for Eastern Asians.

I was in my Anna University, Block 5 Hostel walking out to Block 4 Hostel to my friend's room along with my buddy Arun Prasad. Suddenly I got a call on my 1 Month old mobile saying "there has been an earth quake in Chennai and do not go outside anywhere". I took it seriously as it was my friend's Mom who warned me. Then immediately we both went back to our Block TV Hall to watch what has happened. God, yes, it was real. Tsunami has hit the coastal parts of Tamil Nadu and it was the highlight news on all channels. Then with my regular gang, we went to hostel canteen for our break fast.

Myself and Arun were not able to restrict ourselves. Around 9:30 AM, both of us started to Marina Beach in Chennai on my bike [Probably not a wise decision that we took]. The scenes that I saw on the way at Santhome Beach are a mass of people carrying blood shedded bodies, a group of rescue team serving food packets to the affected people, ambulance carrying dead bodies etc..We were at Santhome Beach, 2 KMs ahead of Marina beach. Santhome beach was one of the highly affected areas in Chennai city with more casualties. We were not allowed to go into the beach area there. So we proceeded further to Marina.

Here is the real Marina Beach. As we entered, the beach, almost the entire beach sand has been flooded with water along with scattered cars upside down, auto rickshaws, Motor cycles etc..The beach totally had its worst scene ever. The water was accumulated over the entire beach spreading across the roads until the DGP office, Queen Mary's college etc.

The scenes that I wont forget for my lifetime. Scary as well. Again here as well, the Police dint let us inside the beach. This earth quake has take almost 2,00,000 lives across the world and almost 10000+ lives in Tamil Nadu. Apart from lives, this has taken away the fishing vessels and houses of almost all the fishermen along with coastal Tamil Nadu especially in Nagapattinam, the worst hit place in Tamil Nadu. Some villages of this town has been reported as completely washed away without even a single survivor.

Its been 5 years now and each horror scenes that I saw are still in my eyes. Till date, some of the affected people who lost their homes and lives have not even got a permanent house to stay. After this incident, whenever I go along ECR Road along the East coast beach, I will always see some temporary houses built for the Tsunami affected people. But still many people are yet to be given permanent residence. Thanks to the govt of Tamil Nadu which is trying to provide a permanent house to these affected people.

Its been 5 years now and this morning, I just thought about the worst incident I have ever seen in my life. Praying for all the brothers and sisters who have lost their lives in this devastating incident that occurred on 26th Dec 2004. Let their soul rest in peace.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Twitter - The Don of Microblogging

I have been a hard core user of Twitter for almost more than 6 months now [of course I use Oratweet more than Twitter, More loyal to Oracle :-)].
If I call Twitter as The Don of Microblogging, I should call Oratweet as The underworld Don. Yes, I love Oratweet more than Twitter. Doesn't matter which I like most, but both of them are real good tools that helps this generation to effectively collaborate with each other. I really cant believe the way information is shared across the the people in a day. Believe me, upload a video to youtube and tweet the link, in case if the youtube video is a useful one, minimum you will have guaranteed 200 hits in a day based on average followers of 100. And if it is more useful video, then I really don't have to tell the approximate hits. You can guess!!

Does every one login to Twitter website to see the tweets? Unlike Orkut scraps or Facebook wall updates, you can get the tweets right on your Desktop using Echofon, a firefox add-on or Pidgin, a chat client. No one wants to log on using browser every 10 mins or 20 mins to see their new tweets. Any new tweets will be pushed to your Desktop apps and you will be forced to see them :-) Thanks to the exposed Twitter APIs which has helped people to come up with such cool apps including one for Iphone as well.

Impressive tweeter whom I love to follow, Mr. Sashi Tharoor - Communicates effectively in 140 characters about his daily updates and actions that he does as an Esteemed External Affairs Minister. I don't miss even a single tweet of his. Thanks to Twitter which helps to directly tell my view to Mr. Tharoor in 140 characters.

Also power of Twitter can be explained on the fact that the Foreign Ministers of India, Egypt and Bahrain had a Tripartite Meeting on Twitter :-) [Posted on Mr. Tharror's website].

Twitter dominates the entire microblogging world and its a lovely tool friends. Start using it and follow me on