Kartik 16, 2065 Vik Samvat. Yugabda 5110, November 1, 2008

1. FESTIVALS: The tercentenary celebration of Gur-ta-Gaddi being celebrated at the Sachkhand Gurudwara at Nanded, Maharashtra is of great relevance to the Sikh Community. This involves the remembrance of the 300th year of the consecration of Guru Granth Sahib as the last guru of Sikh community by Guru Gobind Singhji. The event also commemorates the 300th anniversary of the Parlok Gaman of Guru Gobind Singhji. Takhat Sachkhand Shri Hazur Abchalnagar Sahib is the main Gurudwara situated in Nanded. Guru Gobind Singh was the 10th and last Guru of the Sikhs who held his court and congregation here. He died in Nanded and his ashes are buried in the Sachkhand Gurudwara on the side of the river Godavari. It is believed that from Nanded Guru Gobind Singhji rose to heaven along with his horse Dilbag.
Main events during the 12 day celebarations are Takhat Snan (Holy Bath) on 27th Oct, Gur-ta-Gaddi -Shabad Kirtan on 30th, Parlok Gaman -Shabad Kirtan on 3rd Nov and Nagar Kirtan on 4th 25-30 lakh pilgrims are estimated to attend the event. Local Sangh karyakartas have made significant contribution in reception and stay in houses, langar and medical aid during the event.
2. PRAISE FOR INDIA’S MOON MISSION: 'India over the Moon’, the Times headline, summed up the uniqueness of Bharat’s first ever unmanned mission to the Moon over several previous space missions. “The spacecraft Chandrayaan is designed to measure the composition of the Moon’s surface in full for the first time ever,” said Dr Ian Crawford, who led the team that developed the CIXS camera — the sophisticated X-ray Spectrometer camera — at the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire.
“Apollo had only partly measured the surface of the moon, not of the whole Moon. But since Chandrayaan will go past the Moon and not be under or alongside of it, the camera can record its entire surface.
“Chandrayaan would also provide information on the distribution of chemical elements. We expect a number of new discoveries,” said Dr Crawford, part of the first UK -Bharat collaboration in space science.
“There is still a lot we don’t know about the Moon. (So) accurate maps of the surface composition will help us unravel its internal structure and geological history. Among other things this (Chandrayaan mission) will help us better understand the origin of the Earth-Moon system.”
Chandrayaan’s flight to its final position 95 km above the Moon was interpreted variously by space scientists and writers as, Bharat’s re-emergence as a global power, as the soaring of its ambitions beyond the world, of opening new horizons. Times added, “India that deserves a permanent seat in the Security Council, is a power not to be ignored”.
Criticism that the launch expected to cost £45m while over 450 million Bharatiyas live below the poverty line was dismissed as being ludicrous. “No doubt there will be a great deal of tut-tutting that Bharat has launched a rocket while millions of its citizens live in abject poverty. But it is cheering to discover that this sentiment seems not to affect Bharatiyas themselves, who have responded to their foray into space with unqualified pride,” said space science writer Andrew McKie.
Bates Gill, the director of the Stockholm Peace Research Institute said, “It’s a combination of national prestige and the spin-offs for technology.
The third aspect is the military one. The ultimate high ground: space.”
Henry R Hertzfeld, a professor at the Space Policy Institute of George Washington University said “Space is a global enterprise.” Dr Crawford added “India has made an excellent contribution to the international effort in lunar exploration and positioned itself as a major player for international joint programmes.” --Vijay Dutt, HT's UK Correpondent, in London.
3. HOW INDIA FLEW TO THE MOON ECONOMY CLASS: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) spent just over Rs 380 crore (about half the price of a Jumbo Jet) on Chandrayaan-1, with 1,000 scientists toiling over it for three years. A similar effort by NASA or any other space agency would have cost at least five times more. In real terms, Chandrayaan-1 cost only about 4% of Isro's budget over three years.
How did Isro do it? "Optimisation," says its chairman G Madhavan Nair, "There are some tests the Americans would have done six times and we did only thrice. We scrutinised every parameter and optimised the tests. Yes, you may call it a calculated risk, but, touch wood, we have been successful with this approach so far.'
But this didn't mean cutting corners, insists the Isro chairman. "More than 30% of the sub-systems that went into Chandrayaan-1 were used by us in other operations. The PSLV we used for the launch is almost the same we have been using for several previous launches, with the only difference being the six enhanced strap-on motors (the quantity of solid propellants was increased from nine tonnes to 12 tonnes each)."
The next big goal: Chandrayaan-2, The deadline:2010. The cost: Rs 500 crore. That is still only one-tenth of IPL rights.
4. NASA PROS SEND RESUMES TO BHARAT: With Chandrayaan-1 on way to its rendezvous with the Moon, Bharatiya space establishment's credentials seem good enough for job inquiries from scientists around the world.
"I have got 10 to 12 (emails)", Chandrayaan project director Dr M. Annadurai said, "and am sure some of my bosses have also got such mails." And all these came after the Chandrayaan launch.
These feelers are mostly from scientists of US's National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the European Space Agency (ESA). The want to work for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). "There are some Bharatiyas who want to come back home", said Annadurai, "but there are also citizens of other countries working for NASA and ESA who have mailed enquiries about openings at various levels in ISRO." And, he says, they were willing to take huge salary cuts, because ISRO doesn't pay as much as their current employers, despite the implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission.
Former ISRO chief Krishnaswamy Kasturirangan is not surprised. He did perceive an "inspirational impact" when he planned the Moon mission.
5. CHANDRAYAAN A WAKE-UP CALL FOR AMERICA, SAYS OBAMA: Democratic candidate Barack Obama, used Bharat's moon launch to tell Americans that they were taking their eyes off the ball.
"With India's launch of its first unmanned lunar spacecraft following closely on the heels of China's first spacewalk, we were reminded just how urgently the United States must revitalize its space programme if we are to remain the undisputed leader in space, science, and technology", Obama said, promising to revitalize the US space program and close the gap between the Space Shuttle's retirement and its next-generation replacement including funding $2 billion more for Nasa. The Chandrayaan venture even made it to the widely watched eveing network news (each of which has ten times the viewership of cable channels as CNN and Fox) as an example of Bharat's progress and intent.
6. THE AKHIL BHARATEEYA KARYAKARI MANDAL (ABKM) of RSS, which comprises of members of Kendriya Karyakarini Mandal (KKM) and Sanghchalak-Karyavah and pracharaks from various zones (Kshetra) and provinces (pranths) met at Vignan Vihar Residential School - Gudilova near Vishakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) 17-19 October 2008. The meeting was chaired by Shri Mohan Bhagwat, Sarkayavah RSS in presence of Sarsanghchalak Shri K.S. Sudarshan and attended by about 300 delegates. Besides taking a biannual review of Sangh work, programmes from vividh kshetras, the ABKM meeting passed 4 resolutions on the issues pertaining to the current scenarios.
In the first resolution on the Kandhamal incidents and Conversion check the brutal murder of Poojya Swamy Lakshmanananda Saraswathi and four of his disciples namely Sadhvi Bhaktimayee, Baba Amritanand, Kishor Baba and Puranjan Ganthi at his Ashram in Jaleshpatta of Kandhamal district in Orissa by a group of Christian zealots on the Janmashtami day i.e. 23 August, 2008 has been strongly condemned. The Swamiji had devoted all his ascetic life for the all round uplift of the poor and backward people of the region. His work and presence in the area was the most formidable check against cow slaughter and illegal conversion by the Christian missionaries who had masterminded eight previous attacks on his life between 1969 and 2007.
In the resolution ABKM underscored the fact that the unfortunate violence that followed Swamiji’s murder was due to missionary infused socio-economic rivalry between the Kandh tribals and the converted Panas. The harmonious relations between these communities were disturbed with the advent of Christian Missionaries in the region. Large scale conversions among the Panas and subsequent efforts by the converts to usurp lands and reservation benefits of the Kandhs at the behest of the missionaries have led to serious resentment among the Kandhs. A large number of Churches have been illegally constructed on lands belonging to the tribals. Hundreds of tribal places of worship called “Dharani Penu” (Mother Earth), which is the symbol of faith for the Kandhs, have been destroyed by overzealous missionaries. The Kandh identity and culture have come under severe threat.
Expressing its concern on failure of successive state governments in Orissa in implementing the Orissa Freedom of Religion Act 1967 as a result of which while the official records showed only two conversions, the resolution added that the Christian population in Kandhamal district has increased six folds between 1961 and 2001.
In Karnataka it is the aggressive proselytizing activities and blasphemous propaganda against Hindu gods and goddesses by evangelical organizations like the ‘New Life Mission’ that have caused resentment among the people. Opposition to these activities being run in unauthorized prayer halls by the local people was blown out of proportion and described as attacks on churches.
The ABKM noted in the resolution that Religious Freedom as guaranteed by Art 25 (1) of our Constitution, while conferring on every individual right to profess, practice and propagate his/her religion freely, doesn’t grant any freedom to convert others. The Supreme Court of India has unequivocally stated in 1977 in rev. Stanislaus case that: ‘… right to propagate one’s religion does not grant the right to convert another person to one’s own religion’.
The ABKM demanded in the resolution:
1. Steps should be taken to immediately arrest the culprits and conspirators behind the murder of Poojya Swami Lakshmanananda Saraswathi and his disciples.
2. Repressive measures employed by the Police should be stopped and those arrested on flimsy and false charges must be released forthwith.
3. Right to land ownership of the Kandh tribe must be protected by appropriate legislative and executive measures.
4. The amendment of 2002 to the Presidential Order on Scheduled Tribes, which included Kui as a tribe incorrectly, be withdrawn since Kui is only a language spoken by the people of Kandhamal.
5. A central legislation should be enacted to ban religious conversions.
In the resolution, the ABKM called upon the countrymen to wake up to the forces trying to weaken and malign Hindu society and undertake all efforts to strengthen and preserve national unity, culture and identity.
In Resolution No - 2 on Curbing Islamic Terrorism with an Iron Hand, the Akhil Bharatiya Karyakari Mandal expressed serious concern over the situation arising out of the serial bomb blasts taking place in various parts of the country. In the resolution, the ABKM appreciated our security agencies like the Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS), Mumbai; and police of states like Karnataka, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Delhi for their successful actions and investigations against the Jehadi terrorists that brought to book a large number of them.
The ABKM strongly decried the campaign of calumny unleashed by pseudo-secularists against Hindu organizations branding them as terrorists. It is clear that the elements sympathetic to the Islamic terror for communal or vote-bank reasons wanted to use Hindu organizations as scapegoats despite knowing well that the Hindu movement neither sponsors nor supports violence ever. The ABKM was of the view that the actions of such leaders and intellectuals including a section of our media were emboldening the anti-national elements within the Islamic society.
The ABKM called upon the people in power to shed their vote-bank politics and show courage, determination and foresight to curb this menace with an iron hand withholding permission to state sponsored laws like GUJCOCA. The ABKM demanded that laws that not only act tough on terrorists but also on all their sponsors and supporters – both underground and over-ground – be enacted forthwith.
The ABKM called upon the countrymen to be ever vigilant and compel the Government to take steps to curb terrorism in the country.
In Resolution No - 3 on Widespread Carnage by Bangladeshi infiltrators in Assam the ABKM strongly condemned the attack and burning of villages of the people of Assam origin and the killings of the locals by the organized gangs of Bangladeshi Muslim infiltrators in Assam in the first week of October 2008.
The Bangladeshi Muslims have torched more than 40 villages including Mangaldoi in Darrang and Udalgudi districts and killed more than 70 people. Hundreds are injured and more than 80,000 people have been displaced and living in camps. The Bangladeshis have hoisted Pakistani flags at various places and took out processions raising slogans like ‘Pakistan Zindabad’. The ABKM considered it as a very serious incident.
In this context, the ABKM referred to the judgment of Guwahati High Court (delivered on July 25, 2008 [WP.c.No. 1094 of 2008]) as worth mentioning in which it was stated that: “large number of Bangladeshis present in the state of Assam have a major role in electing the representatives both to the legislative assembly and the parliament and consequently, in the decision making process towards building the nation…..If this phenomenon continues, the day is not far off, when the indigenous people of Assam , both Hindus and Muslims and other religious groups, will be reduced to minorities in its own land and Bangladeshis, who are freely and merrily moving around the fertile land of Assam, will intrude upon the corridors of Power. (Para -213)……. Influx from Bangladesh is a regular phenomenon with the resultant contributory factor behind the outbreak of insurgency in the state. The illegal migration not only affects the people of Assam but has more dangerous dimension of greatly undermining our national security, about which mention has been made in Sonowal(I) Case [Supreme Court case ] ((Para 218)……..A strong political will to free Assam from illegal Bangladeshi is the need of the hour coupled with public activism in that direction. (Para 222)”
The ABKM cautioned the central and state governments that the incidents of Assam could recur in other states also if the Bangladeshi Muslim infiltration problem is not resolved. Therefore, keeping in view the gravity of the situation, the Central Government should enact a comprehensive legislation on the lines of Britain and some other countries, to detect the Bangladeshi Muslim infiltrators, delete their names from the voters’ lists and deport them to Bangladesh besides penalizing those who give shelter or employment to such infiltrators.
In Resolution No - 4, the ABKM compliments Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti and the patriotic people of Jammu and Kashmir for the unprecedented success of their magnificent agitation against the revocation of land allotment and Yatra management rights of Shri Amarnath Shrine Board and that the agitation of Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti should be seen as a manifestation of the accumulated popular resentment against the unjust and discriminatory policies of the Government towards the people of Jammu and Ladakh, under the pressure of the secessionists, in the last 60 years. The resolution added that the time had come to ensure honourable and safe return of the displaced Hindus of Kashmir; and to put an end to the discrimination against Jammu and Ladakh; and also to do away with the policy impediments (like Art. 370, separate Constitution, separate symbols, duel-citizenship etc) in the path of complete integration of Jammu-Kashmir with the rest of the country.
The ABKM appealed to the people of the entire country to strengthen the hands of the nationalist forces in Jammu-Kashmir and compel the government to change its policies. In the resolution, the ABKM urged the Central Government also to stop appeasement of the secessionist and pro-Pakistan elements and take stern action against them to restore peace in the Kashmir Valley. At the same time it should immediately change its continued unjust and discriminatory actions against Jammu and Ladakh.
7. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC EULOGISES VAJPAYEE’S GOLDEN QUADRILATERAL HIGHWAY SYSTEM: “Our roads don’t have a few potholes”, Prime Minister Vajpayee once complained to aides in the later part of 1990s. “Our potholes have a few roads”.
He announced the launch of the Golden Quadrilateral scheme of joining the four major cities of India with a unique roadways system, which according to Don Belt of the National Geographic, is exceeded in scale only by the national railway system built by the British in 1850s. “Ten years after Vajpayee’s announced (in 1998), the GQ is among the most elaborately conceived highway systems in the world, a master-piece of high-tech ingenuity that is, in many ways, a calling card for India in the 21st century.”
“Seen on a 48-inch flat-screen computer monitor at the highway administrative headquarters in Delhi, the GQ seems as beautiful as a space capsule. Its designers describe it as an ‘elegant collection of data points’ or a gleaming, ‘state-of-the-art machine’, a technologically advanced conveyor belt moving goods and people around India with seamless precision.”
“The National Geographic in its October 2008 issue adds: It is easy to be swept up in their enthusiasm for a system so technologically advanced that one day, any rupture in the pavement could be detected by sensors and maintenance crews dispatched; where tolls would be computerised and instantly tabulated against long-term projections, where accidents trigger an instant response from nearby emergency team. And there is no doubt that the highway and the development it has generated have quickened the pulse of the nation, boosted traffic volume, and brought millions of workers pouring into medium-size and large cities from the country side.”
National Geographic says that the 3633-mile expressway is part of the largest and the most ambitious public infrastructure project in the country’s history, one with a social engineering goal at its heart.
8. CHILDREN ATTAIN BRAHMANYAM IN WAYNAD: Creating History and paving a new revolution in Hindu society, 22 Children from various castes of Kerala were raised to ‘Brahmanyam’ after vigorous training in vedas and how to conduct pooja in traditional ways.
The fact that, among the 22 four are Children from Tribals adds more glory to this venture initiated by Kshetra Samrakshana Samithi. In an atmosphere filled with Vedic chants in Pongini Bhadrakali Temple children were given poojamudras as recognition of completing their first part of training. Tantric Scholars Madhapalli Sreedharan Nampoodiri and Sreekanth Cheruvakkadu conducted the pooja initiating function. Perumbadappu Rishikeshan Namboodiri conducted upanayana to these children. Practical training in Poojas will be given in the temples under Kshetra Samrakshana Samithi.
9. SARASWATI STATUE IN BELFAST GARDENS: Arts Ekta, Northern Ireland's first and only Multi-Ethnic arts organization, last week unveiled a wood carving of Saraswati Mata, Hindu Goddess of Arts and Knowledge. This is one of the first non Christian Religious artworks in a public place in Northern Ireland and is situated in the Palm House in Botanic Gardens Belfast. The woodcarving was placed in Belfast's Botanical gardens in memory of Vyishnu Somasundram, a young and dedicated volunteer who worked hard for the community in Northern Ireland. He passed away sadly in September 2007 at the young age of 15. Nisha Tandon, Arts Ekta's development manager said, "Vyishnu was a great asset to Northern Ireland's arts community, a very talented artist and dedicated volunteer. He will be missed for ever."
10. GOVT TO HELP OVERSEAS BHARATIYAS TRACE THEIR ROOTS: The Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs is planning to launch a project for the people of Bharatiya origin to trace their roots.
The Ministry has recently signed a memorandum of understanding with a company, Indiaroots, for tracing roots. Under the programme, an overseas Bharatiya can submit an application along with a fee of Rs 20,000. Later the Ministry will forward the application to Indiaroots, along with an advance amount of Rs 6,000 for tracing the ancestry of the applicants within a period of three months. If the roots were successfully traced, the balance amount will be released to the company. In case the attempt is not successful, a further amount of only Rs 4,000 will be released to Indiaroots and the government will refund foreign currency equivalent to Rs 10,000 to the applicant.
11. NEW HINDU SCHOOL OPENS IN THE NETHERLANDS: The Shri Ganesha primary school opened with 35 pupils on August 8th 2008 in Almere, Netherlands. This is the fourth Hindu school opened by the Hindu Education Foundation (Stichting Hindoe Onderwijs) and is the sixth in the Netherlands. Other schools are located in Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Utrecht and The Hague. The Foundation expects that the new school will eventually have a student body of 200.
12. SRI LANKA WILL USE BANANA LEAVES AS COMMERCIAL FOOD WRAPPERS: In an eco-friendly measure against the environmental hazard caused by polythene wrappers, the Sri Lanka government has evolved a technique to prepare food wrappers from banana leaves. According to the Sri Lankan Agriculture Ministry, "a technique has been perfected to produce cured banana leaves that can be kept more than one month under refrigerated condition without any changes in color or quality."
13. NY SCHOOL CAN PRACTICE YOG, BUT NOT SAY "YOG": A high school in the state of New York has won approval to offer students a voluntary yog program -- as long as it's not called yog. Some local parents had voiced fears that a "yog program" would promote Hinduism and thereby violate the doctrine separating church and state; but they have agreed to let the Massena High School present the program as "relaxation." The compromise allows the school to set up an after-school club to give interested students to practice yogic postures and gain a deeper understanding of… "relaxation." Board of Education President Julie Reagan said, "more than one hundred schools in 26 states use yog in the classroom to relieve stress."
14. JAWANS TAKE TO YOG AS STRESS-BUSTER: 3,000 men from CRPF, BSF, ITBP, CISE, Assam Rifles, SSB and SSG attended a 10-day 'Shivir', a workshop on yoga and pranayama by Baba Ramdev and his disciples at the 25th Batallion BSF camp at Chhawla, located on the outer edges of West Delhi recently. The huge scale of participants shows the seriousness with which organisers, the Welfare and Rehabilitation Board (Warb) want to arrest stress among soldiers. "The jawans trained here will teach 300,000 in 6 months and the entire 7,50,000 tropps with a year", said R.P. Singh IG (Admin) CRPF and Member Secretary Warb.
15. ATTUKAL DURGA TEMPLE HONOURS SRI P. PARAMESWARAN: Attukal Durga Temple in Thiruvananthapuram has entered the Guiness Book of World Records. Every year 50-60 lakh women from all over the world come to the temple on a single day and offer Pongala (a mixture of rice, jaggery and ghee) to the deity. Entry for males is denied and every road, pocket road and bye-lane of the capital city is jam-packed with mud-pots burning on firewood. The Vijayadashami Award for the best social activist of this year instituted by the Temple Trust, was presented to Padmasri P. Parameswaran, RSS ideologue and director, Bharateeya Vichara Kendram on October 10 at the Temple. The award consisted of a citation, shawl and gold locket of goddess Durga Devi. Presiding over the function, leading poet and writer Ezhuvattur Raja Raja Varma complemented Parameswarji for giving pride in Hindu culture and traditions.
“He is the best disciple of Swami Vivekananda and Aurobindo and has given a new direction to the people of Kerala. He has proved that denying past is not progress. Like Himalayas, he is the icon of Hindutva, brave and proud.” resenting the award, Poet Vishnu Narayanan Nampoothiri, described Parameshwarji as the perfect disciple of Swami Agamananda and ‘living encyclopedia of Hinduism & Hindutva in Kerala. Receiving the award, Parameswarji said, he was accepting it with all humility for RSS, which made me what I am.
16. DAMAGE TO SETU WOULD BE A CRIME, SAYS SWAMY: Damaging the Ram Setu would be a criminal offence, Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy told the Supreme Court, accusing the Centre of giving "dubious" interpretations to facts. Swamy, who has petitioned the court against the Sethusamudram project, said in his affidavit that the Ram Setu was a place of worship and causing damage to it would amount to a crime under the Indian Penal Code. The affidavit comes two days after the Centre claimed the Setu, believed to be built by Lord Rama, was not an integral part of Hinduism.
17. ORISSA TRIBALS TO TAKE ON NAXALS: The Orissa government has issued a notification for recruiting 2,000 Adivasi youths from five-Naxal infested districts to fight the insurgents. Only candidates from the Scheduled Tribes (ST) will be recruited to these 2,000 posts of special police officers. The recruitments will be done in Malkangirl, Koraput, Gajapati, Rayagada and Kalahandi districts.
Each district will fill up 400 posts. Selected candidates will enter into a contract with the district police. "On completion of three years of satisfactory contractual service, the eligible special police officers may be absorbed on regular posts against ST vacancies of constables and sepoys or equivalent rank", the notification said.
18. RATAN TATA GIFTS $50M TO CORNELL VARSITY: Tata Group chairman Ratan Tata has gifted $50 million to Cornell University, his alma mater, an endowment considered “one of the most generous ever received from an international benefactor by an American university”. The gift from Tata Trusts, a group of philanthropic organizations run by the head of the business conglomerate Tata Sons, will allow Cornell to establish and expand partnerships with Bharatiya scientists and build on its strength in applied agriculture research.
19. BHARATIYA TREASURE IN BAMIYAN BUDDHAS: A German team has discovered a jute bag in one of the two gaint Buddha statues in Bamiyan, Afghanistan. A researcher said,"This is a present from Bharat to celebrate setting up the Buddha, providing a hint to unveiling the mystery surrounding the creation of the statues".
20. A FEW GOOD THINGS: With the collapse of iconic investment banks Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch, which had led head hunting at Bharat's leading B-schools for years, students are increasingly looking at careers beyond finance and what they call i-banking, and the fancy salaries that came with it. They are nudging towards traditional management streams like marketing. HR and consulting in place of finance. Many students are wondering if it would make sense to pick a stable, homegrown company over a foreign employer.
21. IN SNUB TO PAK, US GEN VISITS SIACHEN: Bharat has been taking several foreign diplomats and generals to Kashmir, and even conducted military exercises in the region. On October 17, Evan Feigenbaum, US Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs, told a Bhartiya media round table about US Army Chief General George Casey's visit to Siachen Glacier that day "As you all know, Gen. Casey is in Bharat and he was in Siachen today", adding "Exciting things are happening in defence."
Hours before Islamabad had loudly remonstrated about General Casey's reported programme to the highest battlefield in the world, which Pakistan considers a disputed territory.
22. JAPAN REFUSES TO COMMIT ON N-PACT: Bharat on Oct 22 formally asked Japan for a civilian nuclear agreement but the latter refused to talk about it at present. Japanese prime minister Taro Aso, confirming the Bharatiya request, instead asked Bharat to keep to its commitments & moratorium on nuclear testing. Describing his talks with Taro Aso on the subject, PM Manmohan Singh said, "It is our sincere desire to develop cooperation on civil nuclear energy. But I do recognize the sensitivities of this in Japan."
23. 7 COMMANDMENTS of Azim Premji, Wipro Chairman, to his 95,000 employees for investing in right opportunities: 1. Right time to invest in right opportunities. 2. Maximum opportunities abound in these times. 3. Make assets go as far as they can by increasing their use. 4. Cut down discretionary expense. 5. Be absolutely cutomercentric. 6. Squeeze out every ounce of productivity, combining skill and 7. Manage risks.
24. CJI TO RECEIVE V.K. KRISNA MEMON AWARD: CJI K.G. Balakrishan has been chosen for the V.K. Krishna Memon award, for his contribution to social justice and fighting against corruption in the judicial system.
25. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Visitors: Dr. Ram Dev Rai Sood and Shri Chetan Merani from USA. Pravas: Dr. Shankar Tatwawadi, Samyojak Vishwa Vibhag is touring Nepal in this fortnight. Dattatreya Hosbale, Akhil Bharatiya Sah-Bauddhik Pramukh, Rashhtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, starts his tour of USA. He will also tour Canada and UK.
26. FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Sabad Kirtan: The faithful find the Door of Liberation. The faithful uplift and redeem their family and relations. The faithful are saved, and carried across with the Sikhs of the Guru. The faithful, O Nanak, do not wander around begging. Such is the Name of the Immaculate Lord. Only one who has faith comes to know such a state of mind. -- Guru Nanak, Japji Sahib.

The Guru Granth Sahib is the eternal guru of the Sikhs. Its sacred verses are called Gurbani, the Guru's word or the song message enshrined in it.
The Granth was composed in poetry perhaps to both prevent alterations or adulterations, and to reach out to human hearts. The fifth Sikh guru, Guru Arjan Dev, first compiled the Guru Granth at Amritsar and the tenth guru, Guru Gobind Singh, prepared the second edition at Damdama. Since then, his authorised version has been transcribed and printed numerous times; it always conforms to the Damdama edition in every respect.
Guru Arjan's compilation contained the hymns of the first five gurus along with most of the saints and holy men of medieval India and the Far East. He installed this scripture in the Golden Temple's Hari Mandar. Guru Gobind Singh in his final sermon conferred permanent gurudom on the Damdama version of the Granth. Since then the Granth has come to be known as Sri Guru Granth Sahib. Of the 5,894 hymns, Guru Arjan contributed the largest number. The Guru Granth includes hymns of many others whose compositions tallied with the gospel of the Sikh faith. Here, the Hindu and Muslim and others meet in the same congregation of holy souls to create a truly universal scripture.
The hymns are set to ragas, useful not only in preserving the originality of the composition, but more so to provide divine experience through the medium of music and the sounds of God's creation. Whilst a great deal of it is cast in traditional verse forms like shlokas and paudis, and could best be understood in the context of the well-known classical ragas, several hymns and songs make use of popular folklore and meters. The inner and integral relationship between music and verse has been maintained with scholarly rectitude and concern. The complete musicalisation of thought was accomplished in a scientific and scholarly manner so that it makes for the unusually vigorous yet supple discipline of the Granth's own metrics and notations.
The Guru Granth verses are often sung in kirtan. In this process true meaning is revealed directly to the Surat consciousness and awareness through cosmic vibrations. The body's energetic vibrations from our voices bond us to the spiritual light of universal intelligence. As we chant the verses the universe speaks to us in metaphoric images. To see a Sikh congregation chant the sacred hymns in unison is to see massed spiritual energy bubble before your eyes. This is how the ordinary words change into the logos and become auspicious.
Reading of the scripture, Gurbani paath, is a sacred rite that permits a connection to the Guru for spiritual guidance. It is more than a simple ritual or a complex scholarly endeavour; intellectual deliberation is engaged to seek wisdom while faith is cultivated in the process to receive the inner light. Reading the rhythmic poetry of Guru Granth is considered by some as healing in itself. Its chant is frequently prescribed to patients for relief of their symptoms and to reduce illness. It seems to facilitate understanding of pain and pleasure by "mindfulness" or "being in the moment".
For the most part the Guru Granth employs the idiom of the common people, and draws its imagery and metaphors from the home, the street and the workplace. The hymns use current figures of speech apart from their metrical richness and sweetness.
The Guru Granth is completely free from bias, animus and controversy. It formed the first interfaith and still universal scripture. Abridged from www.searchgurbani.com. Tricentennial of the Canonisation of the Granth as the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (300 saal Guru de naal) on October 20. -- The Times of India, October 20, 2008