Until the Nobel…


Kailash Satyarthi

Let’s face this: How many of us knew about Kailash Satyarthi before the Nobel? To be honest, I had read about GoodWeave perfunctorily, but knew nothing about the man behind the mission.

Now everyone is talking about “The philosophy and work of Kailash…” This is how the media fails itself perennially. It fails us, too. Continue reading

Swachh Bharath aftermath: Burning of plastic & landfill dumping worries activists

Picture source: 1group903.blogspot.com

Picture source: 1group903.blogspot.com

“Today, we were driving past this scene in a busy traffic junction near an underpass. Around five-six men were burning garbage and they had around six-eight big black bags and it looked like they came from an early morning Swachh clean-up job. Cleaning up, but creating environmental damage by burning or dumping of garbage is something that is bothering us…” Continue reading

Swachh Bharath: Please do not sweep the issue under the carpet

sweepbaby“I am scared of these ‘porake’s.” They are not going to solve the problem. Instead, this opportunity should have been used to create awareness on segregation because all this mixed waste is going to end up in Mandur.”

This is what senior activist N S Ramakanth of Solid Waste Management Round Table said in a panel discussion aired by a Kannada TV channel this evening as a prelude to the Swachh Bharath campaign to be kicked off on Gandhi Jayanthi tomorrow. Continue reading

What’s for breakfast today? Milk, butter, cheese & dioxins


Buffaloes feeding on the garbage at Mandur landfill.

In one of the most disturbing findings throwing light on the consequences of illegal dumping in open landfills, concentration of dioxins among people and animals living around the landfills has emerged to be the highest in India.

The reason: Dioxins, one of the most dangerous chemical compounds which gets released into the atmosphere when municipal and medical waste gets burnt in open landfills, finds its way into the cows and buffaloes that feed on the hazardous garbage. Continue reading

Drizzle at dawn, over-peppered pongal, a cup of tea and some random thoughts


Modern comforts in the midst of a rural setting… Nothing beats it.

Our search for a home in one such setting ended in Yelahanka in a complex that has plonked itself amidst three villages. There are some aged green giants like peepal, banyan and neem settled on roadsides and also small strips of vineyards and coconut plantations. Two tiny lakes on either side of the building sparkle in sunlight but lose out to the heat during summer. Continue reading

Devastated by floods, but drowned by corruption

“When we tell them that the ration card was washed away in the floods, they say, ‘what can we do? If you want rice and kerosene, you have to show the card’.”

Bureaucratic response can be so downright callous! No wonder the scene was awash with such experiences when North Karnataka suffered the worst ever natural calamity in 2009.


Continue reading