97 results for 'Proloy Bagchi'
Long years ago, perhaps in mid 1970s, I happened to be in Bastar – a district that was till then not fully explored. This land prehistoric as it is, is inhabited by the members of the ancient Gond tribe. During that trip I had occasion to visit the Kutumsar cave known for its stalactites and stalagmites. Only 38 kilometres from the district headquarters of Jagdalpur, the caves are pretty long and are underground – about 30-odd metres below the ground level. It was quite forbidding as the caves had not till then been illuminated. But what I saw was amazing – parts of rocks streaming downwards... (more)
Situated at the far end of Lake Geneva, Chateau de Chillon is a place of prime tourist interest around Geneva. The highway from Geneva takes one past Lausanne and Montreux to more than eight hundred years old Chateau. It is supposed to be the prettiest Swiss chateau, located as it is on a rocky outcrop on the banks of the Lake close to the French border. Some say it dates back to Roman times but its construction seems to have begun around nine hundred years ago. It was owned by three different nobilities during different periods of history – the House of Savoy, the Berenese and Vaud. It was... (more)
Nestle India got it out of the blue right in the neck. The “blue” in this surprising event was the innocuous state of Uttar Pradesh (UP). A stray safety test of Nestlé’s 2-Minute Noodles yielded lead content far too excess in proportion than what was permissible. And all hell broke loose – for Nestle India.
Food safety has never been an issue in India. Here checking for adulteration and contamination to ensure safety has all along been non-existent. Everything, from cooking oil to lentils and from milk to spices used to be adulterated. None ever intervened – neither the municipality... (more)
Decades ago when two of my elder brothers used to collect postage stamps we used to find the ones of Helvetia very attractive. Helvetia is nothing but the historical name of the Swiss Confederation. The name is derived from Helvetii, the name of the tribe that inhabited the Swiss Plateau before the Roman conquest. The name Helvetia is still used on the coins and postage stamps of the country.
Whenever one talks of Switzerland, the Alps and Geneva are often associated with it. Among the Swiss cities Geneva is so well known that not many people know that it is not the capital of Switzerland.... (more)
Rahul Gandhi, scion of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty of the Indian National Congress headed by Sonia Gandhi has suddenly become active and is practically slamming Prime Minister Modi virtually every day. Since his return from what has been termed a sabbatical he has been latching on to any and every issue to fire charges at Prime Minister Modi or his government.
It seems almost like the proxy war that Pakistan is waging against India. On realization that it was impossible to take away a military victory from India in an all out war Gen. Zia ul Haq, the Pakistani dictator, propounded the doctrine... (more)
My eldest brother worked through the late 1970s to late 1990s for GATT (General Agreement for Trade & Tariff and now), an UN agency, as consultant to its Director General. He used to live in Versoix (pronounced Versoa) and go to work in Geneva. In 1987 he suggested to us to take a trip to Switzerland. Although those days were not so expensive as they are now – the two way air fare was around Rs. 7000/-, the Swiss Franc was worth Rs 8/- (currently Rs. 68/-) and a Dollar was worth little less than Rs. 14/- (now 64/-) – yet a trip to Switzerland was not quite affordable for us as the salaries... (more)
In the World Happiness Report of 2015 of the United Nations on 158 countries India has slipped from 111th place in 2013 to 117th. This, obviously, means that people in India have become unhappier during the last two years. The report covers the period from 2012 to 2014 and takes into account not just individual satisfaction and wealth but also broad contentment that includes social support, high healthy life expectancy, freedom to make life choices, perceptions of corruption, pro-sociality – the kind of conduct that may include honesty, benevolence, cooperation and trustworthiness. With Switzerland... (more)
There is something unstable in Arvind Kejriwal’s persona that makes him behave in the way he mostly does. He has that penchant for ‘self-destruct’ and, in the process, he betrays the faith reposed in him by hundreds and thousands of common, educated and well-meaning people as also civil society organizations. One wonders whether he has that inscrutable split personality like that of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as it seems there has been a sea change in his conduct and personality since the days of the movement appropriately known as India Against Corruption (IAC).
A man who joined the modern-day... (more)
After I did my post graduation my father told me to prepare for the Civil Services Examinations. In those days there was no other alternative except taking a shot at these exams if one wanted to do well in life. This was more so for those who had opted for humanities, as apart from getting into a college to teach the only other option was to try and become a lowly clerk in a government office. Many of my classmates had to take this option as decent jobs were just not available, unless of course one knew somebody weighty enough to lean on an appointing authority. Thankfully, two of my older... (more)
The other day as one opened the newspapers one found that one essential difference between India and Pakistan had been obliterated by events in the two countries. While two of the Lahore churches were subjected to suicide bombing killing as many as 70 church-goers and injuring a like number (some of them critically), an up and coming church in Hissar district of Haryana was demolished. While the Pakistani attacks on the churches were clear cases of terrorist attacks and were even owned by such an outfit, the one in India was the act of rabid Hindus who not only seemed to have razed the under-construction... (more)