Friday, September 28, 2012

Human Animal Conflict: Save Wildlife

Conflicts between humans and wildlife are very much intense these days. Wildlife competes directly with a rapidly increasing human demand over land and resources. Encroachment of forest areas for agriculture, developmental activities (all kinds or community buildings), livestock grazing etc. are some of the key reasons for increment of conflicts between humans and wildlife. Habitat loss and degradation of habitats forces wild animals to stray into human habitation which creates several conflicts and that lead to harm both humans and animals.

The results of such conflicts are disastrous. Retaliatory killing of wild animals such as electrocution, unbearable beating and in some cases accidental killing of several species. Sometimes Farmers also shoot these native species. People also set forests fires to harm these species.

In India human-wildlife conflict has been one of the most important reasons for reduced support for wildlife conservation by local people and political leaders. Though the solutions are not very complicated, just need few measures that can reduce conflict. 

1. Active maintenance of physical barriers,
2. Active guarding of crops 
3. Reduction in habitat fragmentation and degradation of habitat quality
4. Creating wildlife corridors so can these species migrate easily

Most Affected Species:

Elephant, Leopard, Black panther, Rhinoceros, Indian gaur, Bear, nilgiri tahr, Wild dogs (Dhol), Swamp deer, Several Snakes and Python, Monitor Lizard and although they are only few left but yes people do kill Tigers too.

What can we do:

1. If you find any injured animal, provide emergency assistance to protect species, with particular priority to the tiger, elephant and rhinoceros and large mammals.
2. Call authorities as soon as possible and aware people not to tease animal.
3. Spread mass awareness regarding endangered species, never kill for fun. Prohibit Hunting and poaching. 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Empowering Women

India is the world’s largest democracy, and the second most populous country. India is home to a wide variety of different linguistic, cultural, religious and ethnic groups. India is growing rapidly; however at the same time, social and economic inequality is becoming more entrenched! Women is an integral part of the society and have an equal bidding in all the activities that are taken up culturally, socially, economically and politically. But women are found to be the most marginalized and the most vulnerable category when studied on the context of poverty, availing opportunities, literacy rate and health.

As soon as a child is born families and society begin the process of gendering. The birth of the son is celebrated, the birth of a daughter filled with fear of responsibility and sometimes with pain!! Boys are encouraged to be tough and outgoing; girls are encouraged to be home-bound and shy.

Gender inequality has many drawback, it not only taking back our country in stone era but also there is adverse impact on development goals of economic growth. Blocking women from participation in social, political and economic activities can adversely affect the whole society. In India there is a vast display of gender inequality in education, employment and health. It is common to find girls and women suffering from high mortality rates. The differences in education level is more! The percentage of higher education among women in 7% only. India has witnessed gender inequality from its early history due to its socio-economic and religious practices that resulted in a wide gap between the position of men and women in the society.

The origin of the Indian idea of appropriate female behavior can be traced to the rules laid down by Manu Sanhita in 200 B.C.: "by a young girl, by a young woman, or even by an aged one, nothing must be done independently, even in her own house". And this is just an Idea, the whole picture is horrid! "In childhood a female must be subject to her father, in youth to her husband, and in late ages to her sons; a woman must never be independent."

Women's lives are shaped by customs that are centuries old. "May you be the mother of a hundred sons" is a common wedding blessing. Statistics reveal that in males significantly outnumber females and this imbalance has increased over time. The sex ratio according to census report stands at 833 females per 1000 males.

There are many laws and fundamental rights established for women but where we talk about mentality, nothing works at all! UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has stated, "Gender equality is more than a goal in itself. It is a precondition for meeting the challenge of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance."

There is a need for new kinds of institutions, incorporating new norms and rules that support women equally.. I m not demanding for quota cause I know if women do something they can do better! There is no need of quota but all we want a chance! An equal chance!! There are 3 things which according to me is necessary for "us":

Proper Mind Set

Friday, September 14, 2012

Beautiful Silence...

“You haven’t spoken to me in awhile” is what I feel he is saying to me with his eyes. It’s a line that runs over my mind occasionally when I notice the silence between us, because I know it’s true. We haven’t spoken as much. He doesn’t force conversation. He can tell when I’m withdrawn a bit and I know he doesn’t take it personally. But I know he misses the good chats. That’s what those eyes tell me. 

Sometimes I nod at him as though acknowledging “yes I know, I’m sorry. I should try to make an effort. It’s not fair on you”. But that’s when the weight of guilt tugs onto me. Sometimes I just take it cause I know I’m the one being closed up and I know that keeping him at a distance probably hurts him a little. We are usually so open and talk about anything, and I do love those times, which we shared. He’s always there, right there with me, no matter what I do. But I know we still share something special. We always will be friends for life. 

So sometimes as the guilt tugs on, I try to force myself to say a few words, to make up for the silence. But it doesn’t feel natural because I can tell how he sees through me. He knows me too well. I can’t pretend around him and give him small talk that says "I’m doing fine" like I do with others who don’t know me as well. It’s fine for them. They don’t need to know. But he doesn’t buy it. And so, sometimes it’s easier to just be silent and say nothing. 

I know he’d prefer me to open and share this with him. He wants to be there for me, help me figure it out. But I just can’t deal with it. I don’t know how to and I don’t want to talk about it either. It just hurts. So instead I tell myself that I’m doing fine and that I just need to stay focused and keep it together. One day at a time. Besides I’m not even sure what’s going on either or how to express it. I just feel happier when I try to forget about it.. People prefer that side of me anyway.

“I miss the intimacy” is another line I read from the look in his eyes. But it’s like he’s patiently waiting till I’m ready to open up to him and talk.“he don’t want to have an intimate chat” I told to myself. He’s always around me though. Sometimes we drive together. Sometimes we shop. Sometimes there’s a bit of general small talk when things need to be said. But I do find myself avoiding him a bit when I notice how he sees through me. When those eyes show care and concern for me, like he wants to step in closer. 

I think about how we used to chat.. 'quite a lot'. Laugh about things and talk about anything really. I always felt safe to open up, like I could trust him with anything because of his understanding and acceptance of me, no matter what do or what I look like. After some awkward small talk, I can tell he knows I’m covering up, I feel the frustration and think to myself “why can’t we just forget about it and get on like there’s nothing wrong, like I’m doing just fine?” I love our good deep chats but I just want to skip this one. Sometimes we do get past it and we have a bit of chat and sometimes a laugh too. But when the heavy stuff surfaces up in me and I try to burry it back in, I know he’s looking at me. I avoid looking back but I can feel his eyes on me.

And then life throws a curve at me. Everything surfaces and I feel like throwing it all up. That’s when I know. I just can’t keep it buried in me any longer!  But how do I flush it out? No words come out. And then finally I decide to at least try talk to him about it, but I don’t know where to start or how to express it. All I can say is; 'it hurts and that I’m angry at how the glooms never leaves me, no matter how much I try to fix it or ignore it'. I just want to get out with. But again, no words come. 

Then I notice his arm around me. He doesn’t say anything. He just sits with me and smiles, rubbing my back, holding me close. His smile says “you don’t have to say anything”. I took a breath and the pressure lifts off me. His comforting arms say “I’m here with you”. That make me feel a little better. Helps me more than words. Then his eyes say “and I know. I know how you feel, and I know you too well.” 

All along, those eyes were not pressuring me to talk. They were just feeling my pain and wanting to be there for me. We sit in silence. It still hurts but his comfort helps some of the weight lift off. It’s like we’re opening up without saying a word. In fact, the longer we sit, the better I begin to feel. It’s nice and intimate between us again and it feels right, like it should be. I know we’ll have some good chats again soon. But right now this is perfect. And it’s so good to know that besides our open chats, we have a comfortable language that we can use without saying a word. A part of me wants to explore it even more. To share many more of these. I smile, look over at him and then back at the trees blowing in the wind softly. It’s a beautiful silence.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

... in a dream ...

... in a dream, a wave that keeps on going
never slowing, flowing...
like the night to dawn
feel me when the shadow has gone!

today I m alone,
often live in the fog
but slowly
I make it bright again, 
like the daylight it always was!

I Dream of Me
live my past with you secretly,
peace is not what I want
always crave for unity,
Tie was never in yours list
but you projected...

wish I wasn't so perceptive
The Inside discreet never lies,
My Love, I love you
Even if you can't hear It
Even when you're not near It!

I've come up so far
fighting with the fear of Winter
that blows Inside!
forgotten who I was
And may live in...
always in...
in a dream!!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Book Review: "Wild by Cheryl Strayed"

I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library. ~ Jorge Luis Borges. There are people who love to watch heaps of books in their room while others love the smell of freshly printed books. And then there are those whose monthly budget includes expenditure on buying books.

I love reviewing a book. Sometimes I end up buying a book which turns out to be a literary torture and I don't want anyone to go through the same experience and sometimes, I grab a book which captures the heart and stirs the soul and I want everyone else to to read the book, even at a Gun point :P

This is my second post as book review, I hope people like it!!

Novel: Wild
Author: Cheryl Strayed

A powerful, blazingly honest memoir: the story of an eleven-hundred-mile solo hike that broke down a young woman reeling from catastrophe -- and built her back up again.

At twenty-two Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything.  In the wake of her mother's death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed.  Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life: to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State -- and to do it alone.  She had no experience as a long distance hiker, and the trail was little more than "an idea, vague and outlandish and full of promise."  But it was a promise of piecing back together a life that had come undone. 

Strayed faces down rattlesnakes and black bears, intense heat and record snowfalls, and both the beauty and loneliness of the trail.  Told with great suspense and style, sparkling with warmth and humor, Wild vividly captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddened, strengthened, and ultimately healed her.
(Summary from book) 

*Disclaimer*  -  I finished this book in about a 4 days -- then I had a function in family, supporting events, and few travels regarding work, and I forgot to write the review. So this is really more of a mini-review based on my impressions and what I can remember about the book...

My Review:  Love hiking (for a short time, say for 2-3 hours).  My work teach me the importance of hiking; Wild life photography, closeness with nature, peace, unique travel.... everything depends on the ability to HIKE!!

"Wild" follows writer Cheryl Strayed’s attempt to solo hike the Pacific Crest Trail, a winding path of desert, ice, and rainforest that stretches from Mexico to the Canadian border.  However, her story really begins long before she sets foot on the trail – in the days and weeks that follow her mother’s diagnosis and sudden death from terminal cancer.  Cheryl’s overwhelming grief propels her into a shadowy world of depression, heroin addiction, and sinister way of life that ultimately signify the end of her marriage and the dissolution of other family relationships that send her careening towards rock bottom.  Lost and broken, Cheryl quits her job, finalizes her divorce, and sells nearly everything she owns in a quest to find solace and healing on the Pacific Crest Trail. It is there, in “entirely new terrain,” that this completely unseasoned hiker confronts her own demons, meets a variety of interesting characters, lives on pennies, and occasionally ends up shoeless or covered in frogs.  Yikes.  And EW.

While I enjoyed the opportunity to hike with Cheryl and experience her life through  marvelous write up; I don’t know that I would recommend this book to every reader. The book is based on life experiences, which differ from person to person, and everyone may not relate their life with Cheryl.  Some of her choices following her mother’s death, though she was entirely entitled to make them, were so far out from real situations! I had difficulty connecting with her story.  Despite this lack of attachment, I admired Cheryl’s gutsy decisions to hike and embark on an adventure I know I’d never can have!! 

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

Summary:  Woman’s remarkable experience as she struggles to overcome grief, loneliness, and addiction. The beauty and difficulties of the Pacific Crest Trail. And the connection with nature though out hiking!