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HindustanTimes Sun,28 Dec 2014

Regional Takes

Surviving the bird flu scare

They called me a rebel without a cause, or was it one without a pause? I guess they were right either way. Today, if I live to tell you the story of my kind, it’s only because I’m one of a kind. I’m a goose. Yes, one of those domesticated geese at Sukhna Lake, who escaped the clutches of the men in white that cold December 18 night. Writes Yojana Yadav.

One-on-one with 2014

With Twenty-Fourteen ready for its last lap, BoW (Bit of Wit, yaar) caught up with the outgoing year for an exclusive chat. Excerpts. BoW: What’s the best word to sum you up? 2014: Horrifying, thanks to the Islamic State, the Taliban and Farah Khan. Writes Vikramdeep Johal.

Joint Indo-Russian exercise ‘Avia Indra’

The second phase of Avia Indra I, a joint Indo-Russian military air exercise was held at Air Force Station, Halwara, Ludhiana, from 17th to 27th November. The first part of the exercise was earlier held at Astrakhan near the Caspian Sea in Russia in August. During the manoeuvres fighter, helicopter and SAM (Surface to Air Missile) crews of the two air forces operated together. Writes Mandeep Singh Bajwa.

Puttar Alam Lohar da

Legendary Pakistani folk singer of Jugni fame, Arif Lohar, was in Chandigarh recently. He was in the city to perform at a wedding function, to be followed by a performance in Bathinda at the World Kabaddi Cup final. Writes Khushwant Singh.

A Grave Odour

An odour is leaking out from the graves of the Sukhna Lake’s domesticated geese culled on December 18. For starters, neither has the UT advisor nor the inspector general of police replied to the letter sent by the secretary of Animal Welfare Board of India, C Kalyansundaram, on December 19.Writes Vikram Jit Singh

Radio ga ga, radio goo goo

On November 12, our dear Akashwani celebrated its annual Public Service Broadcasting Day. On this day in 1947, when Mahatma Gandhi could not reach Kurukshetra for a scheduled address to thousands of refugees from Pakistan camping in the Haryana city, All-India Radio (AIR) had carried his voice to them. Writes Rajesh Moudgil.

Ensuring good governance

Good governance means law-enforcement agencies deliver without fear or favour. It means bureaucracy which works on mission mode and not on selfish mode. It means the political class lives up to the trust which people have reposed in them, and finally, it means that civil society not only watches over all of them but fulfils its own responsibilities by being law-abiding. Writes Kiran Bedi

The numbing conformity

What is the best antidote for seasonal active disorder (which is just a fancy name for winter blues): a party, of course! Well it is December, the party month; and as a testimony, all of us have dozens of invites sitting on our side table for attending a wedding, Christmas, New Year and not to forget a Lohri bash. Writes Seema Bedi

Putting up with pet peeves

It all started with a parrot. The poor bird was discovered when it had fallen out of its nest and a dog wanted to make a meal of it. My sons quickly rescued it and brought it home. Taking it to the vet to fix the broken wing and buying a cage for it was but a short step. Writes Charu N Thakur.

A rare compliment

I realise now why people take even the compliment as complaint. We have assumed that only finding faults and criticising gets things done. Compliment is rare. In teenage, I had the notion that my father made a mountain out of every molehill about me. Writes DC Sharma.

OMG! MSG is finally here

For once, Salman bhai must be having sleepless nights, and Shahrukh Khan must already be counting his days in the industry. PK or no PK, Aamir ‘sincere’ Khan would probably be the only Khan of the troika who would somehow find a way to remain in the industry despite this tsunami. Even Rajinikanth must be mulling retirement after all.Writes Aarish Chhabra

The biopic bandwagon

Be it cinema or theatre, the rush seems to be for the real-life story, more so after the runaway success of Bhag Milkha Bhag (2013) on the city-based sports legend Milkha Singh. Priyanka Chopra in Mary Kom (2014) was the next sporty success. And now, well-known film-makers and wannabes are all rushing to get the rights to film the lives of those who have made a difference. Writes Nirupama Dutt

Apprentice learning

Recently, an acquaintance’s eight-year-old daughter celebrated her birthday in school and the family decided to take toffees packed in transparent, small packets to class. Of course, they bought the savouries from the most expensive shop in town.Writes Madhusheel Arora

Virus hits birders hard

The closure of the Sukhna lake for 30 days could not have come at a worse time for the tricity’s burgeoning tribe of bird-watchers. The lake provides an ideal location to watch migratory and resident birds via a criss-cross of jungle tracks. Writes Vikram Jit Singh.

Why date a girl who writes

Date a girl who may never wear completely clean clothes, because of coffee stains and ink spills. She will have many problems with her closet space, and her laptop will never be boring because there are so many worlds cluttered inside -- open tabs of popular music jammed alongside interesting factoids about Catherine the Great and the immortality of the jelly fish. Writes Geetanjali Sharma.
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