Saturday, April 4, 2020
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Petrol Pumps and Gas Stations in the Country

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Public Sector Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) have informed that expansion of Retail Outlet network is a continuous process to ensure adequate availability of motoring fuels like petrol and diesel throughout the country. Public Sector OMCs have issued advertisements for award of Retail Outlet dealerships on 25.11.2018 and 14.12.2018.

As on 01.01.2020, Public Sector OMCs have 60,227 retail outlets in the country.

Further, Petroleum & Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) is the authority to grant authorization to the entities for the development of City Gas Distribution (CGD) network in Geographical Areas (GAs). Providing Piped Natural Gas Connection (PNG) and establishment of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Stations are the part of the development of CGD network and the same are carried out by the entities authorized by PNGRB, as per the work plan. As on 01.02.2020, a total of 1,989 CNG Stations have been set up in the country.

This information was given by the Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas Shri Dharmendra Pradhan in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.

Modernisation of Armed Forces

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Government is taking measures for modernisation of the Armed Forces, through procurement of new equipment and upgrading of existing equipment so as to ensure that the Armed Forces are equipped to meet the entire spectrum of security challenges. The modernisation projects are progressed as per the approved Capital Acquisition Plans and in terms of the extant Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP).

Capital procurement of defence equipment is undertaken from various domestic as well as foreign vendors, based on threat perception, operational challenges and technological changes and to keep the Armed Forces in a state of readiness.

During the last three years and in the current year, 197 contracts have been signed for capital procurement/upgradation of defence equipment for Armed Forces such as Missiles, Aircraft, Artillery guns, Assault Rifles, Radars, Rockets, Helicopters, Weapons, Simulators, Ballistic Helmets, Bullet Proof Jackets and Electronic Fuzes and Ammunition.

The Budget Allocation and Expenditure under Capital Budget Head under Defence Services Estimates are given below:-

(Rs in Crore)

Year

Budget Estimates

Expenditure

2017-18

86488.01

90438.39

2018-19

93982.13

95229.06

2019-20 (up to January, 2020)

1,03,394.31

91862.97

This information was given by Raksha Rajya Mantri Shri Shripad Naik in a written reply to Shri Hemant Sriram Patil and others in Lok Sabha today.

Juice aplenty from the Grape variety from ARI, Pune

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As the country prepares for the summer months, Pune’s Department of Science and Technology(DST) institute brings news of grapes with increased juice production capacity. Scientists from Agharkar Research Institute (ARI), an autonomous institute of the DST, have developed a hybrid variety of grapes which is resistant to fungal diseases, high yielding and has excellent juice quality. It is also suitable for preparation of juice, raisin, jam and red wine and farmers are enthusiastically adopting the variety.

The hybrid variety ARI-516 has been developed by interbreeding of two species from the same genus — Catawba variety of Vitis labrusca and Beauty seedless variety of Vitis vinifera.The work which has been published in the in Proceedings of the International Symposium on Grape Production and Processing is a result of a collaboration between Maharashtra Association for the Cultivation of Science (MACS) and ARCI and can benefit farmers, the processing industry and consumers.

Dr Sujata Tetali, Scientist, Genetics & Plant Breeding Group from MACS-ARI, has developed this inter-specific variety by working on necessary properties. The fungal resistance of ARI-516 has been derived from Catawba, which is an American grape variety. It has superior quality fruits and higher yield per unit area. An early ripening hybrid, it matures in 110 – 120 days after pruning. The variety has elongated bunches and bears pleasant musky flavoured berries and performs well in Maharashtra, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Punjab and West Bengal.

MACS-ARI is involved in The Indian Council of Agricultural Research, ICAR’s grape improvement programme through All India Coordinated Research Project on Fruits. MACS-ARI has developed many inter-specific and intra-specific grape hybrids under the hybridization programme. The hybrids are evaluated for their disease resistance, fruit quality, and whether they are seedless or not.ICAR’s grape improvement programme through All India Coordinated Research Project on Fruits. MACS-ARI has developed many inter-specific and intra-specific grape hybrids under the hybridization programme. The hybrids are evaluated for their disease resistance, fruit quality, and whether they are seedless or not.

India ranks twelfth in the world in terms of grape production. About 78% of grape production in India is utilized for consumption, 17-20 % for raisin production, 1.5 % for wine and 0.5 % for juice. Maharashtra leads in the production of grapes in India with a share of 81.22 %. A negligible share of grapes is used for juice production. A majority of farmers in Maharashtra cultivate ‘Thompson seedless’ and its clones for table purpose or raisin making. These varieties are highly susceptible to fungal diseases which increase plant protection cost. Grapes suffer 8.23-16 per cent of post-harvest losses. Juice making is an excellent option to reduce post-harvest losses.

ARI-516 grape variety has been recently identified for release by the Varietal Identification Committee of ICAR-All India Co-Ordinated Research Project on Fruit, for cultivation in Maharashtra, Punjab, Telangana and Tamil Nadu.

The salient features of ARI-516 include evenly maturing character with long cylindrical medium-sized fruit bunches making this variety superior over other varieties. It has small to medium bluish blackberries with one rudimentary seed in each berry, which is sweet in taste having the value of TSS (Total Soluble Solids) as 20-22 0B with musky flavor having about 65-70% juice content. The berry yield is about 15-20 ton/acre, and it is tolerant to downy & powdery mildew diseases as well as resistant to anthracnose disease — a group of fungal diseases that affect a variety of plants in warm, humid areas.

The consumers prefer ARI-516 for its unique flavour. Being moderately resistant to a majority of fungal diseases, its cost of production is lower. The area under cultivation of ARI-516 is steadily growing and has grown up to 100 acres.

The institution of Lokpal is fully functional: Dr Jitendra Singh

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The institution of Lokpal is fully functional. The President, on the recommendation of the duly constituted Selection Committee, appointed the Chairperson and eight Members of the Lokpal who assumed charge of their offices on 23rd and 27th March, 2019 respectively.

The Lokpal is an independent statutory body established under Section 3 of the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013. In terms of Section 48 of the said Act, the Lokpal is required to present annually to the President a report on the work done by it, which is caused to be laid in both the Houses of the Parliament. Since the Lokpal was operationalized at the fag end of March, 2019, no such report has been submitted by the Lokpal. Hence, details of the cases registered and action taken thereon by the Lokpal are not available.

In a related subject, the Government today informed that in exercise of the powers conferred by section 59 read with section 2(1) (e) of the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013, the Lokpal (Complaint) Rules, 2020 have been notified in Gazette of India on 02.03.2020. The said rules are already in the public domain, having been placed on the website of the Department of Personnel & Training.

The form for making a complaint has been devised keeping in view various provisions of the Act relating to processing of the complaints and the same is annexed to the rules.

This information was provided by the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh in written reply to questions in Lok Sabha today.

ALLIANCE AIR COMMENCES BHUBANESHWAR VARANASI FLIGHT OPERATIONS WITH DAILY DIRECT FLIGHTS FROM TODAY, 31st JANUARY 2020

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Alliance Air, a wholly owned subsidiary of Air India is launched daily direct flight operations from Bhubaneshwar to Varanasi & back from 31st January 2020. This is an RCS route under the UDAN scheme of Government of India. The airline has deployed its 70 seater ATR 72 600 aircraft on this sector.

Flight 9I 747 departs from Bhubaneshwar at 1215hrs and arrives in Varanasi at 1405hrs. Flight 9I 748 departs from Varanasi at 1430hrs and arrives in Bhubaneshwar at 1620hrs.

Varanasi being a major religious hub in India, gets a lot of religious tourism all year long. Domestic tourists most commonly visit for religious purposes while foreign tourist visit for ghats along River Ganges and Sarnath. Most domestic tourists are from Bihar, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, and other parts of Uttar Pradesh, while the majority of foreign tourists are from Sri Lanka and Japan. Varanasi is famous for its muslin and silk fabrics, perfumes, ivory works, and sculpture and is the site of Banaras Hindu University (BHU), which is one of the largest residential universities in Asia with over 20,000 students. This flight will cater to the need of swift connectivity for tourists, students, business community and traders. The option of daily direct flights between the two destinations will reduce the travel time making it convenient for passengers.

All inclusive one way fares Bhubaneshwar Varanasi & vice versa starting at INR 3470/- only.
It is the constant endeavor of Alliance Air to bolster its network and soar higher connecting India & beyond. To book tickets and know more about our various promotional offers log on to www.airindia.in or contact any of our travel agents.

GoAir suspends certain flights due to non-availability of aircrafts

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Pune, January 24, 2020: GoAir currently operates 325+ daily flights and the airline has carried 80 million passengers since its inception in 2005. GoAir flies to 36 destinations that include 27 domestic destinations.

In a press release, GoAir stated, “In the last four weeks, we have gone through unplanned grounding of aircraft, which were supporting our current operation of fleet. And now, we have been informed by our business partners Airbus and Pratt & Whitney of their inability to deliver previously promised aircraft and engines through 9th March 2020 that are required to support our current growth. As a result, we have been forced to temporarily suspend certain flights that are part of our network, schedule and open for sale. We have undertaken these suspensions as far ahead of time as possible in order to minimize the inconvenience to our customers, who are our paramount concern. Despite our best efforts, we realize that our flight suspensions may inconvenience our customers, which we regret and profusely apologize. We expect – with the support of Airbus and Pratt & Whitney – to reinstate these flights and operate at the earliest opportunity.”

The company further informed, “We would like to assure our customers and partners that our currently published schedule incorporates a conservative view of aircraft and engine deliveries as provided by Airbus and Pratt & Whitney to minimize, or eliminate, the need for flight cancelations in the future. GoAir remains on track to receive 12-15 aircraft each year through the end of 2025 in support of our planned growth. We also reaffirm our focus and commitment to punctuality, reliability and the highest level of customer experience that have put us on the top of the Indian aviation industry for the last 15 continuous months.”

GoAir is part of the 283-year-old Wadia Group that comprises leading brands including 101-year-old Britannia Ltd., 140-year-old Bombay Dyeing, 156-year-old Bombay Burmah, 65-year-old National Peroxide Limited, a decade old Bombay Realty and many others.

GoAir operates from Ahmedabad, Aizawl, Bagdogra, Bengaluru, Bhubaneswar, Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi, Goa, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Jammu, Kochi, Kolkata, Kannur, Leh, Lucknow, Mumbai, Nagpur, Patna, Port Blair, Pune, Ranchi, Srinagar, Varanasi and 9 international destinations namely Phuket, Male, Muscat, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Bangkok, Singapore, Kuwait, and Dammam.

“With the immense support and faith that customers have bestowed upon GoAir, the airline has grown by a robust 30% per annum for each of the last three years. During this period, GoAir has also been recognized as India’s most reliable airline with least number of cancellations through November 2019 and the best on-time-performance for 15 months in a row, showcasing our commitment to exceptional customer service throughout this exciting phase of growth. On the back of a firm order for 144 Airbus A320neo aircraft, GoAir’s business plan articulates a continued double-digit growth through 2025. And just like we have done for the last 15 continuous months, our commitment and focus on the customer experience remains strong throughout our planned phase of growth”, the company said.

Kashmiri Pandits demonstrate at Jantar Mantar Delhi to mark three decades of Exile

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New Delhi, January 19, 2020: Year 2020, marks 3 decades of Exile and homelessness of peaceful Kashmiri Pandit community forced violently by the support of majority Muslims in Kashmir.

January 19, 1990 was a night of horror and helplessness for the whole Kashmiri Pandit community, over five lakh Kashmiri Pandits were forced overnight to leave the valley through a barbaric campaign emanating from the mosques from all over Kashmir unleashed by the terrorists supported by locals. The circumstances that led to forceful eviction of the entire minority of Kashmiri Pandits/Hindus from their homeland is no less than genocide.

To commemorate the Day, India4Kashmir, a people’s movement started with a firm belief and agenda to take 5 Non Kashmiri Indians along with 1 Kashmiri Pandit back to Kashmir and in true sense integrate Kashmir with rest of India, organised a demonstration where many like-minded Indians from various organisations supported India 4 Kashmir and its cause.

After 30 years of forced exile finally, the Government of India has shown spine and defanged article 370 and 35 A, much awaited and necessary political move, India 4 Kashmir hails this bold move of the current dispensation and assure the GOI of fullest support to the honourable Prime Minister in his future endeavours.

Jyoti Kaul of the I4K said , “January 19, 1990, a black date will remain etched in the hearts and minds of not only those who suffered the holocaust but also remain a date to remember in history for the future generations so that no other community in the world has to ever face this kind of barbaric religious persecution.

India 4 Kashmir, Delhi-NCR team thanked one and all who supported us by their presence physically at Jantar Mantar and on Social Media to spread awareness about the genocide faced by KP community. Sakshi Mattoo the spokesperson of I4K Delhi chapter categorically mentioned the ideology of I4K that for every one Kashmiri returning to Kashmir we will ensure that 5 Non Kashmiris also settle in Kashmir. She reiterated our stand that after abrogation of article 370 there is hope of Home coming and survival of the otherwise miniscule community.

“While we applaud the actions taken by the Government in J&K till date we also urge the central government to take measures so that our long awaited justice is now delivered and the community is provided with opportunities for its safe and dignified return to the Valley along with other Indians.”

Take strictest action against Mafia

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Bhpoal : The Chief Minister Shri Kamal Nath told the Collectors to take strictest action against Mafia and take action according to the normal procedure in case of violation of Municipal Corporation and Municipality’s rules by the general public. He further mentioned that only those individuals, who are involved in extortion and commit crimes in organized manner come under the category of mafia. He directed the Collectors that they should relieve officers and employees, who have been transferred within 3 days, whether their relievers have joined or not. Shri Kamal Nath issued directives to the General Administration department to monitor this system. Shri Kamal Nath gave these directives to the Collectors and Commissioners during a video conferencing of ‘Jan Adhikar’ programme held at Mantralaya today.

Ensure people get quality food grains from ration shops

The Chief Minister said that complaints have been received that food grains less than the average quality are being distributed from the fair price shops. Ensure people should get quality food grains from these shops. He asked the collectors to make arrangements for procurement in time. Shri Kamal Nath said that a list of cases of encroachment done on government land for farming or any other use should be prepared and presented within a month. Pay attention to prevent black marketing of fertilizer at any cost.

Prepare a list of farmers, who have not filled loan waiver forms in time

The Chief Minister asked to prepare a list of all those eligible farmers, who have not able fill loan waivers forms in time. Shri Kamal Nath told to pay attention also on the purity of medicines while continuing the ‘Shuddh ke liye Yuddh’ campaign.

Sringent action against erring housing committees

The Chief Minister has given instructions to be strict in cases of cheating of members in cooperative housing societies. He said that not a formality of filing an FIR against the erring committees should be done only but they should be punished. Shri Nath directed the Chief Secretary to hold a meeting on all the erring housing societies and strict action should be taken against them. If necessary, the government should take action to acquire such societies under the Cooperative Act and appoint an administrator. The Chief Minister gave these instructions in connection to the case of Shri Girish Chandra Dubey of Bhopal regarding sale of plot number 80 allocated by Gaurav Griha Nirman Cooperative Society to someone else.

Conduct campaign to give possession of land given on pattas

The Chief Minister expressed displeasure in the cases of non-possession even after getting the pattas. Shri Nath said that a campaign should be launched in the entire state to ensure that those who got the pattas also have possession of that land. The Chief Minister gave this instruction in cases of complaints of not getting possession even after getting the pattas by Shri Giani ji of Bhaisravan village of Shivpuri district and Shri Dallu of Patadiataj village of Dewas district.

Follow up of “Aapki Sarkar-Aapke Dwar” programme must

Expressing displeasure over the non-follow-up of complaints in the Aapki Sarkar-Aapke Dwar programme, the Chief Minister said that the purpose of this programme is not served due to on the spot non-disposal of complaints. Shri Nath said that all the collectors must ensure that the complaints received are resolved on the spot and the complainant should be satisfied.

Five districts top in state in redressal of complaints

Five districts including Ujjain, Tikamgarh, Ratlam, Singrauli and Mandla topped in resolving complaints this month in the CM Helpline. Khargone, Shajapur, Anuppur, Satna and Burhanpur were ranked low. Among the departments with the least complaints were the Narmada Valley Development, Public Relations, Legal Legislative Affairs, Scheduled Tribe Welfare and Mineral Resources Department.

Legitimate problems should be resolved immediately

The Chief Minister gave instructions to the collectors to develop such a work culture to solve the legitimate problems and grievances of the general public immediately. He said that Collector should make such arrangements so as to ensure that people need not to lodge complain in CM Helpline in their districts.

Chief Minister Shri Kamal Nath directed to investigate why Shri Vinod Kumar Singh, resident of village Teekat Khurd in Sidhi district did not get subsidy for six years after taking loan to open dairy. He said that strict action should be taken against whosoever is guilty in this case. Instructions have been given to stop the increment of Inspector Upendra Jhari station in-charge Nemawar for not registering the report of beating up of the daughter of Salma Bi in Harda district by her in-laws. The Chief Minister has instructed to take action against Joint Director Health for not providing benefit of Janani Suraksha Yojana to Shahdol resident Smt. Parvati Soni after delivery.

On the complaint of Shri Anil Singh Jat, a farmer of Dopal Kheda village of Neemuch district, the Chief Minister directed to close down the crusher near his agriculture field. Farmer Shri Jat informed that his crops were being damaged due to the dust and blast caused by the crusher

One year imprisonment to Israel Qureshi in Power Theft case

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Bhopal : The District Court has pronounced a verdict of One year imprisonment and a fine of Rs. One lakh 9 thousand 405 in case of power theft by Israel Qureshi, a resident of Labour Colony, Indrapuri, Nizamuddin Road under the Bhopal City Circle, Anand Nagar Zone of Madhya Kshetra Vidyut Vitran Company. It is to be mentioned that the case was registered by the inspection team of the power distribution company against Israel Qureshi for stealing electricity by connecting direct wires from the LT line for his Ayan A-One chicken shop on June 14, 2016. The case was presented by the company before the Special Judge (Electricity) in the District Court of Bhopal.

Vice President advises media to curb any unhealthy trend that affects credibility

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The Vice President of India, Shri M Venkaiah Naidu today called upon the media fraternity to do a serious introspection and curb any unhealthy trend that affects its credibility.

Speaking at the 50th anniversary celebrations of Thuglak, a Tamil magazine, founded by the late Cho Ramaswamy, Shri Naidu expressed his concern over the unhealthy trend of mixing news and views. He said that slanting stories and providing disproportionate coverage to certain issues in line with the management’s thinking has become the norm these days.unhealthy trend of mixing news and views. He said that slanting stories and providing disproportionate coverage to certain issues in line with the management’s thinking has become the norm these days.unhealthy trend of mixing news and views. He said that slanting stories and providing disproportionate coverage to certain issues in line with the management’s thinking has become the norm these days.

The Vice President said that instead of giving complete information in an unadulterated manner, a section of the media was deciding what the viewer should watch or the reader should read. “Such a trend is not good for the fourth estate and Indian democracy in the longer run”, he cautioned.

Shri Naidu observed that journalism in the past was treated as a mission and many eminent journalists like the late Cho wielded the pen without any fear or favour. He said that they never succumbed to any kind of pressure or allurement, nor had they compromised on their integrity and values. They always remained wedded to the core principles of journalism and maintained high standards of accuracy and objectivity.

Describing Cho Ramaswamy as a multi-faceted genius, the Vice President said that he had left an indelible imprint on the world of journalism, cinema, drama, politics, law and literature.

The Vice President said that Thuglak’s rise tofame was due to Cho’s fiery and fearless journalism that put nation’s interest before anything else. Recalling the resistance put up by him during the Emergency, he said that Cho always believed in journalistic freedom and never missed an opportunity to oppose any move to curtail journalistic freedom.

Shri Naidu observed that Cho’s style of journalism not only took everybody by surprise but also shook many because of his bold, courageous, sharp, satirical and witty writings and reviews.

Stating that Cho’s sharp wit, spontaneous humour and stage presence not only made him a successful drama artist but also a popular comedy actor, he said that his tryst with cinema transcended generations just as his Thuglak magazine did. “His fans belonged to all ages, loving clean and spontaneous humour”, he added.

The Vice President appealed to the people to elect their representatives based on the four ‘C’- Character, Calibre, Capacity and Conduct of the candidates. This is very important to strengthen the democracy, he said.

A special edition of ‘Thuglak’ brought out to mark the 50th Anniversary was released by the Vice President and the first copy of this edition was presented to popular film actor, ShriRajnikanth.

The Editor in Chief of Thuglak, Shri S. Gurumurthy, popular actor, ShriRajinikanth, members of the family of late Shri Cho Ramaswamy and others were present on the occasion.

Following is the full text of the speech –

“AnaivarukkumIniyaPongalVazhthukkal”

Editor of ThuglakS.GurumurthyGaru and his entire team of Thuglak journalists and employees, beloved readers of Thuglak, members from the family of Cho Ramaswamy, Rajinikanthgaru, sisters and brothers,

At the outset, I pay my reverential homage to late Cho Ramaswamy and compliment the entire team at Tughlak for carrying forward his legacy.

It is indeed a momentous occasion. The completion of 50 years is an important milestone for any organization and it assumes greater significance in the case of Tughlak as it has been the torchbearer of ethical journalism.

Such an achievement is not easy and it was made by possible only due to the strong foundation laid by the intellectual genius Cho. It was enriched by his dedicated team in Thuglak and strengthened by the thinking readers of Thuglak.

I was happy to know that before my arrival a unique cross-examination session took place in which the readers posed a series of questions to the Editor, who answered them patiently. Such an initiative is truly laudable as it strengthens bonds between Tughlak and its readers.

I am told that organizing such a session has become a tradition at Thuglak and is being held every year on January 14. This is a unique hallmark of Thuglak.

Cho Ramaswamy was a multi-faceted genius, who left an indelibleimprint on the world of journalism, cinema, drama, politics, law, literature and without question in the field of Sanathana Dharma. His belief in the civilizational assets of Bharat and the religious tenets of Hinduism has always guided his vision. As we celebrate the completion of 50 years of Thuglak, it should be remembered that the magazine became synonymous with Cho Ramaswamy.

Thuglak’s rise to fame was due to Cho’s fiery and fearless journalism that put nation’s interest before anything else. The resistance put up by him during the Emergency and the creative way in which he blackened the front page and carried a review of the old movie ‘Sarvadhikari’ (Dictator) will always remain etched in our memories.The resistance put up by him during the Emergency and the creative way in which he blackened the front page and carried a review of the old movie ‘Sarvadhikari’ (Dictator) will always remain etched in our memories.

Cho always believed in journalistic freedom and never missed an opportunity to oppose any move to curtail journalistic freedom.

On a personal note, I recall the friendly conversations I used to have with Shri Cho Ramaswamy when both of us were members of the RajyaSabha. I had always marvelled at the ease with which he used to inject humour into every discussion.

As a literary expert, Cho’s works on SrimadRamayanam, Mahabharatham, facets of Hinduism and other similar works, are eternal symbols of his unshakeable belief in Hindu philosophy, the Vedas, Itihasas and other traditions. His other works include famous novels like Muhammad Bin Thuglak which was later made into a drama and movie, Unmaye Un VilaiEnna, tele-serial EngeBrahmanan, etc. all of them espousing a cause, belief or way of life. His novels were known for their humour and satire.

He was deeply influenced by MahakaviSubramaniyaBharati. I am told that during the Emergency the literary section of Thuglak quoted Bharathiyar’sPanchaliSabhatham, in which Arjuna consoled Bhima saying “Kattundom, Poruthiruppom, KalamMaarum” (We are bound now, but we will wait! For the times to change!!)Bharathiyar’sPanchaliSabhatham, in which Arjuna consoled Bhima saying “Kattundom, Poruthiruppom, KalamMaarum” (We are bound now, but we will wait! For the times to change!!)

Cho’s masterly direction and narration in theatre, I am told, has given his scripts an immortal life. Dramas like EndruThaniyumIndhaSudhandhiraDhagam, Muhammad Bin Thuglak, stay relevant in contemporary politics. I am told that his dramas were the most sought after during his times and the audience used to thoroughly enjoy them.

Cho’s sharp wit, spontaneous humour and stage presence not only made him a successful drama artist but also a popular comedy actor. His tryst with cinema transcended generations just as his Thuglak magazine did. His fans belonged to all ages, loving clean and spontaneous humour.

Cho’s contribution to journalism through Thuglak is the jewel in the crowning glory of Cho’s public life. Cho’s style of journalism not only took everybody by surprise but also shook many because of his bold, courageous, sharp, satirical and witty writings and reviews. The Thuglakmagazine started in 1970 was inspired by his satirical political drama ‘Muhammad bin Thuglak’ and hence the name Thuglak.

I have seen Cho’s brand of journalism from close quarters. At a time when media had to depend on advertisement revenues, Cho ensured that Thuglak survived on readers’ subscription revenue. I understand that even today, every issue of Thuglak carries 48 pages only. Not more or not less. Indeed, the readers of Tughlak deserve applause.

Cho’s satire and journalistic standards brought him closer to many political personalities. Despite having friendship with leaders and public intellectuals from varied background, Cho remained an intellectual centrist and spared nobody whenever due.

Thuglak is celebrating its 50th Anniversary, an important milestone that any organisation shall always cherish. Continuing his legacy in the field of journalism is the best tribute one could pay to him. Continuing his legacy in the field of journalism is the best tribute one could pay to him.

I wish Thuglak endured success and I am confident that the entire team of Thuglak under the editorial leadership of Gurumurthygaru shall continue to hold the beacon of journalistic ethics.

Dear sisters and brothers, the press had played a pioneering role in India’s freedom struggle and in strengthening the foundations of democracy in post-Independent India. Over the past many years, the media landscape has transformed profoundly with the advent of electronic media and the social media more recently.

In the past, journalism was treated as a mission and many eminent journalists like the late Cho used to wield the pen without any fear or favour. They never succumbed to any kind of pressure or allurement, nor had they compromised on their integrity and values. They always remained wedded to the core principles of journalism and maintained high standards of accuracy and objectivity.

What we see today is a far cry from all that. The media is no longer neutral. These days, one can hardly get an objective picture of the current happenings or any development by reading one newspaper or watching a single news channel.

The unhealthy trend of mixing news and views, slanting stories and providing disproportionate coverage to certain issues in line with the management’s thinking has become the norm these days. Instead of giving complete information in an unadulterated manner, a section of the media is deciding what the viewer should watch or the reader should read. Such a trend is not good for the fourth estate and Indian democracy in the longer run.

I feel the time has come for the entire media fraternity to do a serious introspection and curb any unhealthy trend that affects its credibility.

I understand that Cho’s commentary on SubramaniaBharati’s Bhagavad Gita is played every year before the Thuglak Anniversary meet. Bharati was an embodiment of both Bhakti and Nationalism and it is no surprise that Cho drew inspiration from the great poet from Ettayapuram.

I would like to conclude with a quote from SubramaniaBharati’s “Enn Thai” stressing on the united spirit of Bharat Mata:

“MuppathuKodiMugamudayalUyir, MoimpuraOnrudayalIval

SeppuMozhiPadhinettuUdayal, Enir, SindhanaiOnrudayal”

This is a beautiful poem that brings out the essential unity in diversity which has been the foundational spirit of our great country Bharat.

Thank you and Jai Hind!