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HindustanTimes Wed,30 Jul 2014

Regional Takes

Children of the Railways

The train journey with my brother and sister had come after a long time. There was no direct flight from Delhi, so we had to go by this means from Kolkata to Rourkela, Odisha. Excited to be together, we settled ourselves. Train journeys take us back a long way to childhood. Writes Harbir K Singh.

An open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi by Kiran Bedi

PM could urge the media to exercise self-regulation and self-restraint in projecting women in a manner, which is derogatory to the dignity of women, writes Kiran Bedi.

When stars cheat the astrologer

Our “forward-looking” leaders will take oath only when the stars and numbers are aligned. In the latest parliamentary elections, they even filed their nomination papers at opportune time by the horoscope. Writes Rajan Kapoor.

Kasol, quietly

The red-and-white mobile telephony tower stands right at the edge of the river that divides Old Kasol and New Kasol. You see poetry in this too. That’s the problem with these hills. Writes Aarish Chhabra.

Quenching thirst for purity

My late grandmother used to say that she enjoyed drinking water straight from the tap, as it gave her a feeling of abundance and purity. Cut to 2014 and you are unlikely to find anyone that would find merit in this argument. Writes Madhusheel Arora.

A young officer’s first taste of war

Indian troops undertook many operations into east Pakistan in the run-up to the 1971 war to cause attrition and loss of morale, gather information, blood our own troops and dominate the enemy territory. Writes Mandeep Singh Bajwa.

Unfair to the unlovely

July 16 is observed as World Snake Day to enhance the conservation of these misunderstood and persecuted reptiles. Of these, the checkered keelback suffers the most. We often come across news from mofussil towns and villages of keelbacks in dozens surfacing from drains and killed in tangled heaps by "alert" authorities or local vigilantes. Writes Vikram Jit Singh

Operational intelligence most effective weapon to combat terrorism

There is little evidence of infrastructural development in the border areas of the Northeast. In the Arunachal Pradesh area, the Chinese have roads up to the border, whereas our soldiers have to climb 16,000 to 17,000 feet to reach the border whilst their supplies are still ferried by mule trains. Writes Gurbachan Jagat.

Ruldu Ram, the roving barber

Barbers are an affable community. Despite huge technological advancements, no alternative to a physical tryst with a member of this fabulous group has been discovered. Writes Col Avnish Sharma (retd).

Know yourself and your enemy

Now that the Modi government is two months old, it’s time to take a hard look at our security preparedness, both internal and external. Available intelligence reveals that the threat to our security and territorial integrity is imminent. Writes Gurbachan Jagat.

‘Beta, why BA?’

All of you studying humanities in school or pursuing arts in college would be familiar with this question: “Beta, why BA?” And before you can answer, come more queries such as: “Didn’t score well in science?” “Is there any scope? Have you enquired?” “You could’ve done commerce at least. Writes Avleen Kaur.

Digital salmons, phishers waiting

Holy Moses! I nearly jumped out of my chair in delight when I saw my mobile phone flashing an incoming call from one of my cousins, Ms Foolhardy, who had not called up in a long time. But any hope of a forthcoming gossip session evaporated as soon as I heard her voice, which was so low that I bet her forehead must be creased. Writes Neha Verma.

Punjab budget shows no new direction

It is like any ordinary day except that it offers an opportunity to the government to realistically take stock of the prevalent economic and financial situation and to signal a road map for course correction to stabilise the fiscal and to reverse the economic decline. Writes KR Lakhanpal.

Crazy heart for football

It was mid-1986, three months after our battalion had been entrusted with the task of sealing the border at Attari in view of the hostile activities on the other side. The operational environment was rather demanding. Writes Maj Gen GG Dwivedi (retd).

Pen friends forever


In this era of Facebook, Internet, and Google+ friends, it may seem outdated to discuss pen friends but four decades ago, they formed a more personal social network. Writes Dr AS Nagpal

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