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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Frontier Wars !!


Territorial sovereignty !  - is the main reason of many a wars !


இந்த கிளி சொல்கிறது - எங்க ஏரியா உள்ளே வராதே !!

Pigeon quenching its thirst !!

It is summer in Chennai ~ and it seethes hot mid-day.  People are thirsty ! – there could be plenty of options to quench thirst.  Soft drinks, diet soft drinks, fruit juice, flavoured waters, vitamin-enriched waters, milk, soy beverages, even coffee and tea contribute to one’s  daily water requirements. But while all of these beverages hydrate one’s body, they're not created equal when it comes to weight control or health.  Humans  can't live without water. It delivers oxygen and nutrients to cells, flushes toxins from organs, regulates body temperature, keeps your skin moist and cushions your joints.  According to experts,  plain water is your best hydration choice: It's calorie-free and void of additives. 

For sure have read the  story of   a thirsty crow that comes upon a pitcher with water at the bottom, beyond the reach of its beak. After failing to push it over, the bird drops in pebbles one by one until the water rises to the top of the pitcher, allowing it to drink. 

Thirst is the craving for fluids, resulting in the basic instinct of animals to drink. It is an essential mechanism involved in fluid balance.  Continuous dehydration can cause many problems, most often associated with renal problems and neurological problems such as seizures.  When a person is thirsty, a drink of water can be very satisfying, but after the thirst has been quenched, drinking more can be unpleasant. Researchers scanned the brains of people as they drank water. Brain areas involved in emotional decision-making lit up in the scanner when people drank in response to feeling thirsty, whereas regions involved in controlling movement kicked in when people forced themselves to keep drinking after quenching their thirst. 

Whether we know Science or not, we all feel thirsty and look for quality water when in hot !  Remember your school days…. [if you are 40+] ~ there used to be rusted iron pipes from the water tank……. Students would line before the water tank [very thought would make modern day youngsters and mothers scary] – there would be no tumblers or receptacles,  one would  open the tab / lift the nozzle, keep one’s hand in a manner that falling water would find its way to the mouth……none cared to check of its purity, taste, colour, odour and more…….. a few decades earlier, perhaps none would have imagined that water would be ‘crore industry – with multi-brands’ ruling the market…life has changed since !!  Water today is a hot selling commodity


Here is a Pigeon quenching its thirst  ~ while a Crow sits at a distance
With regards – S Sampathkumar

Monday, May 27, 2024

Kuruvi breakfast !!

Jasmines are fragrant – and what do you have for breakfast ! – Idly, Vadai, dosa, Pongal .. .. rava uppuma


Surprised to see this Sparrow tucking into flower ! eating it !! 

Candid Click - Azhwan in mirror


கண்ணாலே காண்பதெல்லாம் !!  நம் ஆழ்வான் சுவாமி போன் வைத்து இருப்பது படத்தில் தெரியவில்லை, கண்ணாடியில் தெரிகிறதே !


Candid click !!


Sunday, May 26, 2024

Macavity ~ the kitten !! : மியாவ் மியாவ் பூனைக்குட்டி !

This young Cat pictured near my house is extremely  attractive – know Macavity ?

Macavity   !!!  -  is a ginger cat,  very tall and thin with sunken eyes and brow deeply lined with thought. While its head is highly domed, its coat is dusty and whiskers are uncombed. It sways its head from side-to-side and it is always wide awake even when one thinks that it is half-asleep.

“Macavity"  is a song from Cats, sung by Bombalurina. In the 2020 film adaptation, Taylor Swift, who plays Bombalurina, sings the track.

மியாவ் மியாவ் பூனைக்குட்டி !  வீட்டை சுத்தும் பூனைக்குட்டி !!

அத்தான் மனது வெல்லக்கட்டி ! அவர் அழகை சொல்லடி செல்லக்கட்டி !!

குமுதம் 1961 ஆம் ஆண்டு வெளிவந்தது.  ஏ. சுப்பாராவ் இயக்கத்தில் வெளிவந்த இத்திரைப்படத்தில் எஸ். எஸ். ராஜேந்திரன், விஜயகுமாரி மற்றும் பலரும் நடித்திருந்தனர். இப்படத்திற்கு கே. வி. மகாதேவன் இசையமைத்திருந்தார். பல பாடல்கள் ஹிட்டானது.  எம். எஸ். இராஜேஸ்வரி  குரலில், மியாவ் மியாவ் பூனை குட்டி பாடல் பிரபலமானது.  பாடல் புது மணப்பெண் மனக்களிப்போடு பாடுவது போல் அமைந்த பாடல்.   இவர்தாம் - களத்தூர் கண்ணம்மா திரைப்படத்தில் அம்மாவும் நீயே அப்பாவும் நீயே பாடியவர்.    நாயகன் படத்து  - நான் சிரித்தால் தீபாவளி, பாடலிலும் இவர் குரல் ஒலிக்கும்.

Cats have been a cinema staple for more than a century, dating all the way back to the 1901 silent short film The Sick Kitten. Sometimes they're cute, and sometimes they're creepy, but a film is almost always more interesting with a feline element.  The Sick Kitten is a 1903 British short silent comedy film, directed by George Albert Smith, featuring two young children tending to a sick kitten. 

Cats is a 2019 musical fantasy film based on the 1981 Broadway musical Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber, which in turn was based on the 1939 poetry collection Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats by T. S. Eliot. The film was directed by Tom Hooper, featuring  an ensemble cast, including James Corden, Judi Dench, Jason Derulo, Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Ian McKellen, Taylor Swift, Rebel Wilson and Francesca Hayward in her film debut.


Macavity the Mystery Cat, also called the Hidden Paw, is a fictional character and the main antagonist of T. S. Eliot's 1939 poetry book Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats. He also appears in the Andrew Lloyd Webber 1981 musical Cats, which is based on Eliot's book. Macavity is a cunning criminal and con artist; he possesses mystical powers and is the antagonist of the musical.

Macavity's a mystery cat, he's called the Hiddenpaw

For he's the master criminal who can defy the law

He's the bafflement of Scotland Yard, the Flying Squad's despair

For when they reach the scene of crime, Macavity's not there


In the film Cats (2019), Macavity is played by Idris Elba. This version had a major role as a deranged villain with the intent of getting to the Heaviside Layer by any means. Throughout the film, he kidnapped all the other contestants so that he would be made the Jellicle choice by default.

Forget all the above – this kitten is attractive !!
With regards – S Sampathkumar


Saturday, May 25, 2024

Welcoming a new chick - young Pigeon to this beau World !!


During Covid pandemic, I watched with horror and helplessness a young one unable to properly bring out its child -  it  is so commonly seen and known but its scientific name would make it unintelligible – ‘clade Columbidae’ – it is the common Pigeon.  That time, its egg kept in the shade of a window in the house opposite to me just fell down after 10 or 12 days, again watched such bungling couple of times and thought these Pigeons are incapable of upbringing.


In Feb24, it laid an egg on my window still – I had to protect is providing shade and whatever, yet after 25 odd days, it simply abandoned the egg and went away.  Now somewhere  at the start of the month, Pigeon laid an egg again in the gap between my window glass (it was open for airflow) and the wire mesh – I had to do the parenting – collected some twigs, dry leaves, some thread and what not, tried making a comfortable home for the egg and next day saw another egg.


Now there were two eggs – one of the Pigeons remained eternally or perhaps was sharing shift with the other ! – we had to be vigilant, it is a safe place, Cat or any other predator cannot reach – and we walked silent and ensured that we made no noise or disturbance .. .. . and yesterday, as my wife heard some sound, she went nearer and could see the young one coming to the beautiful World – the birth of a new one of a Pigeon  (she videographed it too without disturbing them).   The offspring of a pigeon is called a squab or a chick. 

The birth of a child brings immense joy to all concerned.  Childbirth, also known as labour, parturition and delivery, is the completion of pregnancy and continuation of progeny.   Every year millions are born globally, in developed countries, most deliveries occur in hospitals. There is nothing greater in life than being blessed with a baby and seeing it for the first time, as the Doctor shows the new born is the greatest ecstasy -  newborns are traditionally whisked off to a bath within the first few hours of their birth.


Rock, Pink, Eurasian collared, wood, Mourning, Magnificent fruit, Victoria crowned,  Crowned sandgrouse , Indian fantail, Indian fantasy, Mondain, Iran roller, Italian Owl, Laudino Sevillano Cropper, Lenardo, Naked Neck Tumbler,  Nish Highflyer, Norwich Cropper  and much more……. If you are wondering what this is all about ~ these are some of the varieties of Pigeons…… those lovely birds…. the  word ‘pigeon’ is derived from the Latin word ‘pipio’, meaning ‘young cheeping bird’. It is also known as ‘dove’ which is of Norse origin. Pigeons are commonly found on Temples – the walls of Sri Parthasarathi Swami Temple have them in large numbers. I had once posted of the thousands that gather everyday morning opposite the famous Vivekanandar House or to be precise opposite the Lady Willington teachers’ training institution.  Pigeons and doves constitute the bird ‘clade Columbidae’  that include some 310 species.    What has amazed Scientists and researchers for centuries is their ability to find their homes and fly back, even if it is hundreds of miles away……… pigeons released from any location tend to head straight home with amazing accuracy.  

Squab :  is the young baby bird, especially a pigeon, rook or dove.  The word "squab" probably comes from Scandinavia; the Swedish word skvabb means "loose, fat flesh".  From time immemorial, man has domesticated pigeons using them for delivering communication – the bird-mail – often you can see them transporting important messages in historical films and more so between amorous lovers….. !!  ~ the ones that fly across is a special breed known popularly as “homers” ~ the homing pigeons.  They have the ability and "map sense"  of  their geographic location and the "compass sense" ~ finding their direction back home. There are competitions for the Pigeons testing the duration of their flight as also the distance that they travel back home. 

Pigeons reach mating age within 7 to 8 months of their birth. Their life expectancy varies between 5 to 15 years based on environmental factors. Once paired, they mate every consecutive season, and they mate for life. They only change their partner if their partner dies or is lost. In case of a lost partner, pigeons wait one entire season for them to return, before moving on. This behavior is absolutely stunning! About eight to twelve days after mating, the female lays one or  two eggs in a span of two to three days. Usually the male is around guarding while the female lays the eggs. The eggs are brilliant white, similar to chicken eggs, although significantly smaller. 

After 18 – 20 days, baby is hatched.  Pigeon babies (called squabs) are very delicate, and have yellow feathers. Their body is fleshy red and their eyelids are closed. About three days after birth they open their eyelids for the first time. The squabs also require warmth for a couple of days before their flesh adjusts to the climate, so the pigeon pair continue to incubate them.  As time passes, the squabs’ feathers start changing their color from yellow to grey, completely transforming in about 10 days.  In about 4 weeks, the squabs reach their adult size, with all feathers grown. They start leaving the nest and roam around on foot, for they haven’t yet been taught how to fly.   

Now in our nest, one is born as we wait for the other to hatch, the new born is hidden and most probably has not even opened its eyes – in the coming weeks, it would slowly grow, have feathers, start flying and .. .. look for a mate !! 

With regards – S Sampathkumar

Homage to Dr V Venkatesh - Paedatrician at Triplicane


Very sad to hear the passing away of Dr V Venkatesh, MBBS, DCH (yesterday night – early hours of this morning) 

Dr Vaiyapuri Venaktesh was a very friendly,  Pediatrician – ever sporting a smile and very popular with Triplicane children and parents.  He did his MBBS at Madras Medical College and practised near Sri Parthasarathi swami temple at South Mada Street.  He was fond of his Royal Enfield Bullet and Triplicane residents were fond of him.

In recent few years, he ran his  Private consultancy at SYMA Medical centre, 37 Car Street, Triplicane, Chennai 600005.  He was fit and extremely friendly with us all and his sudden passing away has shocked the Triplicanites and thousands who know him. 

We pray for Sadagati of his atma.   We pray Sri Parthasarathi to give courage to his family to bear this great loss.

Om Shanthi.
Deep condolences – S Sampathkumar

Photo credit: Mr Chandrasekhar – Ganesh Photo Studio – both pics  taken by him a fortnight ago.

Friday, May 24, 2024

Nymphicus hollandicus ~ சொல்ல வல்லாயோ? - கிளியே

Nymphicus hollandicus  may not hit the brain ! – but likely you have seen this elsewhere !  -  and do you know where ‘New Holland’ is !! 

சொல்ல வல்லாயோ?-கிளியே!  சொல்ல நீ வல்லாயோ?-

தில்லை யம்பலத்தே -நடனம் செய்யும் அமரர்பிரான்-அவன்

செல்வத் திருமகனை- இங்கு வந்து சேர்ந்து கலந்து மகிழ்ந்திடு வாயென்று (சொல்ல) 

சொல்ல வல்லாயோ கிளியே அற்புதமான வரிகளை கொண்ட மஹாகவி  பாரதியார் பாடல்


விந்தன் என்று அறியப்பட்ட கோவிந்தன்  புதின எழுத்தாளர்.   மாசிலாமணி முதலியார் நடத்திய "தமிழரசு" மாத இதழில் அச்சுக் கோப்பவராக வேலை பார்த்து, பிறகு ஆனந்த விகடன் அச்சுக் கூடத்தில் பின்னர் கல்கி கிருஷ்ணமூர்த்தியால் 1941ஆம் ஆண்டு தொடங்கப்பட்ட கல்கி இதழ், என வேலைகள் செய்து வந்த இவர் சில நாவல்கள் எழுதினர்.  1954ம் ஆண்டு எம். ஜி. ஆர், சிவாஜி கணேசன், பி. எஸ். சரோஜா, டி. டி. குசலகுமாரி  நடித்த கூண்டுக்கிளி  விந்தன் எழுத, டி. ஆர். ராமண்ணா இயக்கத்தில் வெளிவந்தது.   நண்பனுடைய மனைவி மேல் ஆசை கொள்ளும் ஜீவா எனும் எதிர்மறைப் பாத்திரத்தில் சிவாஜி.  சிவாஜி எம்ஜியார் இருவரும் நடித்தும் இது  பெரிய தோல்விப்படம். படத்தில் டி.வி.ரத்தினம் , கதாநாயகி BS சரோஜாவிற்காகப் பாடியது சொல்ல வல்லாயோ கிளியே எனும் பாரதியார் பாடல்,  சிவாஜியின் கனவுப்பாடலாக!!  

பல ஆண்டுகள் பின்னர் 1979ல்  எஸ்.பி.முத்துராமன் இயக்கத்தில் சிவாஜி , கல்கத்தா விஸ்வநாதன், பிரமீளா, எஸ்.வரலக்ஷ்மி, ஸ்ரீதேவி,  நடித்த கவரிமான்  இளையராஜாவின் இன்னிசையில் பாரதியார் பாட்டு எஸ்.வரலக்ஷ்மி பாடும் சொல்ல வல்லாயோ. ( பாரதியார்- கிளி விடு தூது) அவர் கச்சேரி செய்வதுபோல் காட்சியமைப்பு. 

காக்டீல்ஸ், என்றும் அழைக்கப்படுகிறது நிம்ஃபிகஸ் ஹாலண்டிகஸ்,  கிளிகளின் ஒரு பிரியமான இனமாகும். ஆஸ்திரேலியாவை பூர்வீகமாகக் கொண்ட இந்த குட்டி கிளிகள் அவற்றின் தனித்துவமான முகடுகள், வட்ட ஆரஞ்சு கன்னத் திட்டுகள் மற்றும் நீண்ட, நேர்த்தியான வால் இறகுகளுக்காக அங்கீகரிக்கப்பட்டுள்ளன. உலகெங்கிலும் உள்ள பல குடும்பங்களுக்கு, அவர்கள் ஒரு நேசத்துக்குரிய செல்லப் பிராணியாக இந்த கிளிகள் உள்ளன. 

New Holland  is a historical European name for mainland Australia. The name was first applied to Australia in 1644 by the Dutch seafarer Abel Tasman. The name came for a time to be applied in most European maps to the vaunted "Southern land" or Terra Australis even after its coastline was finally explored. The continent of Antarctica, later named in the 1890s, was still in largely speculative form; it resumed the name Terra Australis (sometimes suffixed Non Cognita, unknown). Its existence had been speculated on in some maps since the 5th century, under the theory of "balancing hemispheres". 

Lieutenant James Cook, captain of HMS Endeavour, claimed the eastern portion of the Australian continent for the British Crown in 1770, naming it New South Wales. The British settlement of Sydney as a colony in 1788 prompted Britain to formally claim the east coast as New South Wales, leading to a search for a new collective name. New Holland was never settled by the Dutch people, whose colonial forces and buoyant population had a settled preference for the Dutch Cape Colony, Dutch Guyana, the Dutch East Indies, Dutch Ceylon and the Dutch West Indies.


The cockatiel (Nymphicus hollandicus), also known as the weero/weiro [  is a medium-sized  parrot that is a member of its own branch of the cockatoo family endemic to Australia. They are prized as household pets and companion parrots throughout the world and are relatively easy to breed compared to other parrots. As a caged bird, cockatiels are second in popularity only to the budgerigar.  

Originally described by Scottish writer and naturalist Robert Kerr in 1793 as Psittacus hollandicus, the cockatiel (or cockateel) was moved to its own genus, Nymphicus, by Wagler in 1832.  Its genus name reflects the experience of one of the earliest groups of Europeans to see the birds in their native habitat; the travellers thought the birds were so beautiful that they named them after mythical nymphs. The specific name hollandicus refers to New Holland, a historical name for Australia.

Interesting !
With regards – S Sampathkumar

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Asian Koel - காட்டுக்குயிலு மனசுக்குள்ளே

On the day of the Bhogi festival, a very young  Kalyani gives birth to a boy, fearing societal backlash and incapacity, abandons him inside a moving goods train.  The child grows up in tough conditions, intolerant of injustice, especially to the poor, and wonders why his biological mother abandoned him.  No prize for guessing the movie – before you read further, how much do you like BLACK and did you know that it need not be Black !!


This song duet (by legends SP Balasubramaniam & K Jesudoss) – lyrics of Vaali – musical score of Isaignani Illayaraja :  

காட்டுக்குயிலு மனசுக்குள்ளே, பாட்டுக்கென்றும் பஞ்சம் இல்லே பாடத்தான்

தவிலை தட்டு துள்ளிக்கிட்டு கவலை, விட்டு கச்சை கட்டு ஆடத்தான் ..  

போடா எல்லாம் விட்டுத்தள்ளு; பழச எல்லாம் சுட்டு தள்ளு

புதுசா இப்போ பொறந்தோமுன்னு எண்ணிக்கொள்ளடா.. டோய்...


இந்தியக் குயில் (Cuculus micropterus) தென்னாசிய நாடுகளில்   காணப்படும் குயில் இனம். குயில்கள் கூடு கட்டாமல் பிற பறவைகளின் கூடுகளில் முட்டையிடுபவை.   இந்தியக் குயில் 33 சென்டி மீட்டர் வரை வளர்கிறது.   

Kuyil, Koel, Cuckoo – is a songbird – when heard you may not exactly love that !!  .. common perception is the  common cuckoo (Cuculus canorus) is jet black in colour resembling a Crow with red eyes !  .. .. some Cuckoos have a grey head with a thin, bright yellow ring around their eye, yellow feet and a black beak. They have dark grey plumage on their upper parts and barred plumage below which resembles the markings of the sparrowhawk. Some females are a rusty-brown colour.  

Thalapathi was released on a Deepavali day -  5 November 1991, and was a big commercial hit.  Rajnikanth was so popular that the director Mani Ratnam would not allow his character to die in the movie, though the dialogues would say he would his life for friendship of Mammutty.  Somewhere read that    was the initial choice for the role of Arjun, the younger brother of Suriya but it was Arvindswami who played the role of collector to the hilt


Here is an Asial Koel (probably female kuyil) that visited by feeding yard this morning.
With regards – S Sampathkumar

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

in the melee of IPL - there are other Sports too - Boxing Bout !!

After 70  matches – IPL entered the next phase -  Travis Head and Abhishek Sharma have been shaking all opponents hitting so many sixers ! – yesterday it was different.   They challenge came from the costliest buy – Mitchell Starc and his romance with the white ball, which moved appreciably. The leftie running in beautifully was spotting and hitting the fluorescent stumps and fished out Travis Head for another duck.  KKR had a field day, plunging easily into finals.  When there is IPL, we tend to miss out everything else – in between there was a much hyped Boxing bout !

Sixty  years on from the legendary boxing match in which Muhammad Ali beat Sonny Liston to become heavyweight champion of the world for the first time,  there have been discussions and a decade ago, new documents came to light revealing that the shock result was really a fix. The fight between reigning champion Liston and brash young upstart Ali - then known as Cassius Clay – took place on Feb. 25, 1964, at the Miami Beach Convention Center. Ali, just 22, entered the ring as a 7-1 underdog, but pulled off a shock victory which laid the foundations for his glittering career to follow.  When Liston quit after the seventh round and Ali started jumping and waving his hands, yelling'I'm king of the world! I'm king of the world!'.. .. .. Presently it is about the bout between Usyk and Fury. 

This is the story of Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali), generally considered among the greatest heavyweights in the sport's history. He is one of the most recognized sports figures of the past 100 years, crowned"Sportsman of the Century" by Sports Illustrated and "Sports Personality of the Century" by the BBC.  Ali revolutionized the sport of boxing by sheer power and magnetism of his personality.  At a time when most fighters let their managers do the talking, Ali thrived in — and indeed craved — the spotlight, where he was sometimes provocative, frequently outlandish and almost always entertaining.

In boxing, the undisputed champion of a weight class is the boxer who simultaneously holds world titles from all major organizationsrecognized by each other and the International Boxing Hall of Fame. There are currently four major sanctioning bodies: WBA, WBC, WBO, and IBF. There were many undisputed champions before the number of major sanctioning bodies recognizing each other increased to four in 2007, but there have been only 20 boxers (10 males and 10 females) to hold all four titles simultaneously. 

Oleksandr Oleksandrovych Usyk, born 1987,  is a Ukrainian professional boxer. He is the undisputed heavyweight champion, holding the WBA (Super), IBF and WBO titles since 2021, the Ring magazine title since 2022, and the WBC title since 2024.   His challenger, Tyson Luke Fury  born 1988,  is a British professional boxer. He has held multiple heavyweight world titles. He also held the International Boxing Organization (IBO) title during his first reign as champion.In 2015, his victorious fight against Wladimir Klitschko was named Upset of the Year and earned him Fighter of the Year by The Ring.

Oleksandr Usyk has been shorter, lighter and older than all of his opponents since he moved up to the heavyweight division.Usyk's heart and skill are enormous, and he overcame a major size disadvantage against Tyson Fury to become the world's first undisputed heavyweight boxing champion in 24 years.Usyk defeated Fury by split decision on Sunday, knocking down his hulking opponent in the ninth round and eventually earning a narrow win on two scorecards. The 37-year-old Ukrainian is the first heavyweight to hold every major title belt since Lennox Lewis.

Usyk (22-0) added Fury’s WBC title to his own WBA, IBF and WBO belts with a spectacular late-round rally in a back-and-forth matchup between two previously unbeaten champions from a strong era of heavyweight boxing. Two judges favored Usyk, 115-112 and 114-113, while the third gave it to Fury, 114-113.

“It’s a great time. It’s a great day,” said Usyk, who is 6 inches shorter than Fury and weighed in 30 pounds lighter this week.Usyk started quickly, but then had to survive while the confident, charismatic Fury dominated the middle rounds. Usyk surged in the final rounds, just as the Olympic gold medalist has done so many times in his career, taking control with a dominant eighth and nearly stopping Fury in the ninth.Usyk hurt the 6-foot-9 Fury (34-1-1) with a left hand and eventually sent him sprawling into a corner in the final seconds of the round, getting credit for a knockdown right before Fury was saved by the bell.

Fury kissed Usyk on the head after the final bell, and Usyk hugged Fury several moments after the decision was read. “I believe I won that fight,” Fury said. “I believe he won a few of the rounds, but I won the majority of them, and I believe it was one of those what-can-you-do, one of them ... decisions in boxing. We both put on a good fight, best we can do."You know, his country is at war, so people are siding with a country at war. But make no mistake, I won that fight, in my opinion, and I’ll be back. I’ve got a rematch clause.”- Fury was to say.  Usyk landed 41% of his 407 punches, while Fury landed just 31.7% of his 496 punches, according to CompuBox statistics. Usyk both threw (260 to 210) and landed (122 to 95) more power punches.

The most recent undisputed heavyweight champ was Lewis, who beat Evander Holyfield in late 1999 and enjoyed a five-month reign. He soon lost a title because of the territorial squabbles that have beset boxing for the past quarter-century and routinely prevented the biggest fights from happening.Fury and Usyk both asked for this matchup, and they finally got together in the ring largely because of the involvement of Saudi Arabia, which made the financial rewards simply too great for the fighters’ typically recalcitrant promoters and the sanctioning bodies to reject.

For a commoner, it is difficult to understand the game generally perceived as gory !

With regards – S Sampathkumar

Zinnia !! ~ எந்த பூவிலும் வாசம் உண்டு;


Flowers are beautiful – pictured here is an ornamental flower.  

Zinnia is a genus of plants of the tribe Heliantheae within the family Asteraceae.  They are native to scrub and dry grassland in an area stretching from the Southwestern United States to South America, with a centre of diversity in Mexico. Members of the genus are notable for their solitary long-stemmed 12 petal flowers that come in a variety of bright colors. The genus name honours German master botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn (1727–59) a member of the Berlin Academy. 


முரட்டுக்காளை 1980களில் பட்டை கிளப்பிய படம்.  ரஜினிகாந்த் ஜெய்சங்கர் சண்டை கட்சி பெரிய அளவில் பேசப்பட்டது.  இசைஞானி இளையராஜாவின் இன்னிசையில் பஞ்சு அருணாச்சலம் வரிகள் : 

எந்த பூவிலும் வாசம் உண்டு;  எந்த பாட்டிலும் ராகம் உண்டு

எந்தன் வாழ்விலும் அர்த்தம் உண்டு

பாசமென்னும் கூடு கட்டி; காவல் கொள்ள வேண்டும்

தாய் மனதின் கருணை தந்து  காத்திருக்க வேண்டும்

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

the assassination that shook the Nation - 33 years ago !!


the assassination that shook the Nation ! ~ this day 33 years ago !!


Pratap Singh Kairon [1901 – 1965] was the 3rd Chief Minister of the Punjab province (then comprising Punjab, Haryana and part of Himachal Pradesh), and is widely acknowledged as the architect of post-Independence Punjab Province.  He had participated in Indian Independence movement too -  jailed twice by the British Empire, once for five years for organizing protests against British rule.  

On this day in 1939,  the National War Memorial (titled The Response)  a tall, granite memorial arch with accreted bronze sculptures in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, designed by Vernon March and first dedicated by King George VI in 1939 was opened. Originally built to commemorate the Canadians who died in the First World War, it was in 1982 rededicated to also include those killed in the Second World War and Korean War and again in 2014 to add the dead from the Second Boer War and War in Afghanistan, as well as all Canadians killed in all conflicts past and future. It now serves as the pre-eminent war memorial     ~ 21st May is remembered by Indians for different reasons though ! 

Any killing, murder is bad but assassination of top political leaders, especially President, Prime Minister, King or any such high official   can resonate throughout a country. Sometimes the assassination of a leader is so shocking and profound that it triggers what psychologists call flashbulb memory in a country’s citizens. Many will remember forever where they were and what they were doing at the moment they heard their leader was murdered. As a result of painful experiences in their histories, most Governments now surround their leaders with protection.  INDIA badly remembers assassination of Mrs Indira Gandhi and her son Rajiv Gandhi.  There have been many Internationally “ 

— July 7, 2021: Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated by gunmen who also wounded  his wife Martine in an overnight raid on their Port-au-Prince home.  

— April 20, 2021: Chad President Idriss Deby Itno was killed while battling rebels in the north. Hours earlier he had been declared the winner of an election that would have given him another six years in power.

— March 2, 2009: Guinea-Bissau President Joao Bernardo Vieira was killed by renegade soldiers in his palace, hours after a bomb blast killed his rival in the West African nation.

— Dec. 27, 2007: Benazir Bhutto, the first female prime minister in a Muslim-majority country as well as Pakistan’s second nationally elected prime minister, was shot at &  then attacked by a suicide bomber at a political rally in Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Literally the heart of Uttar Pradesh, Amethi had been the citadel of the Nehru-Gandhi family. The constituency has voted for the Congress most times  since its formation in 1967,  Amethi’s first tryst with the Nehru-Gandhi family happened in 1980 when Sanjay Gandhi won the seat. In the next three decades, the constituency changed hands across three other members of the family, with Rahul Gandhi representing the seat since 2004.  Though Sanjay Gandhi won, sadly he died in an accident and in the by-elections, (a reluctant) Rajiv Gandhi stood and won the elections.   In the 1981 by-election:  Rajiv Gandhi secured 258884 votes (84.18%) while his nearest rival Sharad Yadav got 21188 (6.89%) – margin was 237696 !

Much before the assassinations of Gandhis’ – on  6 Feb 1965, Pratap Singh Kairon was on his way from Delhi to Chandigarh when he was waylaid near Rasoi village, Sonipat district, and shot dead along with his personal assistant

One may not concur with his political views and ideologies, may not support dynasty, may not support his party, may not like Bofors !  but for sure would be outraged by the way he was eliminated.  Rajiv statue at Andamans.

He was born in  1944, sent to London, joined engineering at Trinity College, Cambridge, but did not obtain a degree. He returned to India in 1966,  became a member of the Flying Club, where he was trained as a pilot. In 1970, he was employed as a pilot by Air India.   On 23 June 1980, Rajiv's younger brother Sanjay Gandhi died unexpectedly in an aeroplane crash. At that time, Rajiv Gandhi was in London as part of his foreign tour. Hearing the news, he returned to Delhi and cremated Sanjay's body.   Rajiv entered politics on 16 February 1981, when he addressed a national farmers' rally in Delhi.    70 members of the Congress party signed a proposal and went to Indira, urging Rajiv to enter politics and he plunged into politics inevitably after the sad assassination in 31.10.1984 of Prime Minister Mrs Indira Gandhi.

Politics continues over the convicts in former PM  Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination case. Perhaps his own party too – which once stated that they had forgiven the killers and are silent on the death of League Munusamy and 18 others on that fateful day.  His rule was marred by the politically sensitive Rs 64-crore Bofors pay-off case. The Bofors deal, signed in 1986, was believed to be one of primary reasons for the Rajiv Gandhi-led Congress' defeat in the 1989 Lok Sabha elections. 1991 too was an election year – held in 2 phases – each had a different impact.  Maragatham Chandrasekar was to win by a margin of 180572 and the man lost his life campaigning for her this day. 

Visitors to Chennai would not miss the landmark as they come out Central Railway station – the imposing  Government General Hospital, visited by more than 12000 outpatients everyday. This premier institution dates back to 1664, started  as a small Hospital to treat the sick soldiers of the East India Company. It was the untiring inspired efforts of Sir Edward Winter who was the agent of the company that materialised in the first British Hospital at Madras. In its early days the Hospital was housed at the Fort St. George and in the next 25 years grew into a formal medical facility. Governor Sir. Elihu Yale was instrumental in the development of the Hospital and gave it a new premises with in the Fort in 1690.  In 1842 the Hospital opened its doors to Indians.     In the 19th century, medical college got annexed to it and in 2011, the hospital was renamed after Rajiv Gandhi, sadly because his body was brought here after his assassination in May 1991.

This place (Sriperumpudur) is famous for being the birthplace of our greatest Acharyar – Sri Ramanujar ~ life has changed a lot in the past couple of decades after that fatefulday…..  one may not ardently believe in ‘fate or destiny’…….in the prelude to General elections, there were far too varied predictions …… the National Front was still nursing some hopes, there was a wave predicting return of Rajiv Gandhi.  In that melee, was this person, who had retired from active politics  – not any ordinary person for sure~ a man who had been the CM too…. in 1984 in the aftermath of assassination of Indira Gandhi saw routing of all political parties.  Bharatiya Janata Party could win only 2 seats. One in Mehsana and the other was in South ~ the Hanamkonda constituency where M. Chandupatla Janga Reddy of BJP defeated his nearest Congress rival by 54198 votes.  The man who lost so at a time when Congress swept to power was 70 by the 1991 elections, could not get a ticket and had chosen to retire to peace…….. destiny thought otherwise….. he became the PM in 1991 – Sri PV Narasimha Rao.

The night of 21st  May 1991 changed it all ~ on a campaign trail, he arrived from Vizag, garlanded Nehru at Kathipara, even the Press chose not to travel along for that meeting at Sriperumpudur – and rest is bloody history – the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi.  About two hours after arriving in Madras), Rajiv Gandhi was driven by motorcade in a white Ambassador car to Sriperumbudur, stopping along the way at a few other election campaigning venues. When he reached a campaign rally in Sriperumbudur, he got out of his car and began to walk towards the dais where he would deliver a speech. Along the way, he was garlanded by many well-wishers, Congress party workers and school children. The assassin, Dhanu, approached and greeted him. She then bent down to touch his feet and detonated an RDX explosive-laden belt tucked below her dress at exactly 10:10 PM.  Rajiv, his assassin and 14 others were killed in the explosion that followed, along with 43 others who were grievously injured. .. .. a very sad day as the Nation lost its ex-Prime Minister assassinated in his own land and a host of innocent Tamilians who had gathered too died in that blast. 

Nation sadly remembers and pays tribute to Rajiv Gandhi and to those innocents who too lost their lives in the same gruesome assassination this day !!

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

21st May 2024

Iranian President dies in helicopter accident

In classical antiquity, the river was known to the Greeks as Araxes – in  Azerbaijani, the river's name is Araz. In Persian, Kurdish and Turkish its name is ارس (Aras). Varzaqan is a city in the Central District of Varzaqan County  East Azerbaijan province, Iran.  The city is famous for the Sungun copper mine.

Khoda Afarin Dam  is an earth-fill embankment dam on the Aras River straddling the international border between Iran and Azerbaijan.   Armenian de facto protectorate Republic of Artsakh occupied the area in 1993, during the First Nagorno-Karabakh War, but in Oct 2020, the Azerbaijani forces retook control of the dam during 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.  The purpose of the dam is hydroelectric power generation and irrigation. It was conceived as a joint project with the Soviet Union and both sides reached an agreement in Oct 1977. Designs were finalized in 1982, revised in the early 1990s and construction began in 1999. 

The place is in news for wrong reasons  -  On 19 May 2024, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi commissioned the Khoda Afarin hydroelectric complex with its respective water reservoir holding 503 million m3 as 40% of its total capacity; in addition to inaugurating the Giz Galasi hydroelectric complex.

On that fateful day, a Bell 212 helicopter crashed near Varzaqan, Iran, while en route to Tabriz from the Khoda Afarin Dam. The helicopter was carrying the President of Iran Ebrahim Raisi, foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, governor-general of East Azerbaijan province Malek Rahmati, and Mohammad Ali Ale-Hashem, the representative of the Supreme Leader in East Azerbaijan. All nine passengers and crew were killed in the crash.  The crash took place while Raisi was travelling in Iran's East Azerbaijan, near the city of Jolfa, on the Azerbaijan–Iran border.  Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) reported that rescue operations encountered difficulties due to the dense forest terrain, compounded by adverse weather conditions such as heavy rain, fog, and strong winds.[ A day before the crash, the Iran Meteorological Organization issued an orange weather warning for the region.

For inaugurating Giz Galasi,   a helicopter carrying Raisi, Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Governor-General of East Azerbaijan Malek Rahmati, and the Supreme Leader's Representative in East Azerbaijan Mohammad Ali Ale-Hashem as well as Sardar Seyed Mehdi Mousavi, head of Raisi’s security team, two military pilots holding the rank of colonel and a flight technician reportedly  departed with two other helicopters in a convoy to Tabriz.  At approximately 13:30 IRST (UTC+03:30), the helicopter carrying Raisi crashed  shortly after some passengers made an emergency call. Energy Minister Ali Akbar Mehrabian and Housing and Transportation Minister Mehrdad Bazrpash, who were travelling in the other two helicopters, subsequently arrived safely  in Tabriz.

Conflicting reports stated  that the helicopter crashed either near the city of Jolfa or in the villages of Tavil or Uzi.   The Islamic Republic News Agency, citing residents who heard sounds, said it crashed in the Dizmar Forest region, a wildlife corridor between Uzi and Pir Davood, near the northern Varzaqan area of East Azerbaijan province.

Ebrahim Raisolsadati, served as eighth president of Iran from 2021 until his death in 2024. In his early career, Raisi served in several positions in Iran's judicial system, including Deputy Prosecutor and Prosecutor of Tehran. For his role on the so-called death committee during the 1988 executions of Iranian political prisoners, he became known as the "Butcher of Tehran".  He was later Deputy Chief Justice (2004–2014), Attorney General (2014–2016), and Chief Justice (2019–2021). He was Custodian and Chairman of Astan Quds Razavi, a bonyad, from 2016 until 2019.   He was the son-in-law of Mashhad Friday prayer leader and Grand Imam of Imam Reza shrine, Ahmad Alamolhoda.

Raisi ran for president in 2017 as the candidate of the conservative Popular Front of Islamic Revolution Forces, losing to moderate incumbent president Hassan Rouhani, 57% to 38.3%. Raisi successfully ran for president a second time in 2021 with 62.9% of the votes, succeeding Hassan Rouhani.  There were reports of some rigging too !!

Pictured at the start is a representational image of Bell 212 helicopter - first introduced in the late 1960s as an evolution of the Bell 205, the Bell 212 quickly established itself as a workhorse in the helicopter industry. With its twin-engine configuration, it offered increased power and reliability compared to its predecessor making it well-suited for a wide range of missions including utility transport, search and rescue, firefighting and military operations.

The president of Iran  is the head of government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The president is the second highest-ranking official of Iran, after the Supreme Leader. The first election was held in 1980 with Abulhassan Banisadr winning the election. The current acting President is Mohammad Mokhber following the death of Ebrahim Raisi.

With regards – S Sampathkumar