Hitman’s Khel Ratna

A man known for his humungous sixes and stepping down the pitch for taking charge at the bowlers, one after the other. It’d have been a far bigger injustice if the ‘hitman’ was not named ‘hitman’.

His cricketing career was reincarnated at the ‘13 ICC Champions trophy, when the middle order batsman was asked to open alongside his long time, still standing opening partner Shikhar Dhawan. This time he didn’t need much time to prove his salt; marked off his return by scoring an amazing Ton.

A cricketing genius, in whose capable hands lies the powers to get the nation of the mark. One guy for the aspirations of 136 crores. Setting the blood pressure levels at pleasant levels when he strolls off to the 22 yards to give the bowling side a beating. His story is one which draws similarities with that of the ‘God of Cricket.’

This Mumbaikar’s journey from humble beginnings teaches us a grave lesson, that if we put our heart to it, anything under the sky is doable, period.

Rohit was called upto the National team in ‘07 as a middle order batsman who also knew his way around at the bowler’s end.

After debuting for the Nation, the first few years of his career went under a bit of turbulence.

With 4 IPL titles’ and a champions trophy under his belt for Mi, is superfluous accolades to prove his capabilities to adorn the Captain’s cap. Proving that luck without execution is just a whopping ‘duck’. (in cricketing terms.)

The Hitman being awarded the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Retna award on 22nd August came no shock to the rest of the countrymen. His stats in all 3 formats brought home the prestigious award as the 4th Cricketer after The God, Captain cool and VK47.

He’s the only cricketer in the world to have 3 double tons in limited over cricket against his name. With the mammoth (264 vs SL) being the highest runs scored by a batsman in an ODI innings. The hitman is also the Second Indian cricketer to score centuries in all three formats and also bagged ‘19 ICC WC ‘Golden Bat’ award for hitting 5 centuries in that WC. These are just a few feathers of his colourful blue cap.

Rohit Sharma attained a hat-trick of the most number of sixes internationally for 3 consecutive years, across 3 formats, which aided him to cross the milestone of 400 sixes last year. Making him the first Indian and fastest to cross the milestone.

He’s one of the best players of the Modern cricketing world and plays the game effortlessly, making it seem like child’s play.

A wholesome mixture of calmness and aggressiveness; composed like Captain cool and an angry young man with the bat like none other than Viru.

Rohit Sharma once got into trouble with the cops, while hitting one of his huge sixes in gully cricket, which ended up smashing the neighbor’s window. A couple of decades later, the very folks, who taunted him back then might be sitting in some corner, reciting his tales and cheering him on to hit one of those world class ‘sixes.’

Books on Indian History which You Must Read

Indian History has been the theme for many books. Whether its fiction or non-fiction, there are plenty of books which deserve to be on the list of must-read books written on the topic of history. These books give one a detailed understanding of India’s history.

Be it comprehensive historical books or fictional accounts of a historical incident, there are many options for you to choose from. If you are a person who loves both reading and history then the following 5 books are just the right choice for you.

The Argumentative Indian by Amartya Sen

Amartya Sen is an Indian Economist and writer who had won the Nobel Prize in 1998. This book is a collection of essays and it will help one understand the Indian polity. It focusses on the importance of public debate, argument and intellectual diversity in the Indian civilization of the past. Sen writes about his view on how and what will lead to the success of democracy in India.

India After Gandhi by Ramachandra Guha

Ramachandra Guha is an Indian writer and researcher whose areas of interest include society, politics and history. India After Gandhi is a book describing the journey of modern India, from post-independence from the British in 1947 until the 1990s. The book will provide one with a thorough understanding of India’s social and economic spheres. It covers the country’s political history over the later part of the 20th century.

The Last Mughal by William Dalrymple

William Dalrymple is a Scottish historian, writer, critic, art historian and curator. He has won several awards and prizes for his writings. The book is a comprehensive description of the time period when the Mughal empire started declining in India. It will be a treat for people who love reading history. It is about the last Mughal ruler, Bahadur Shah Zafar II, and it provides an account of 19th century India with the tale of the emergence of the British Raj.

Another famous book by him is White Mughals which is his fifth major book, it tells the story of the love affair between James Achilles Kirkpatrick and Khair-un-Nissa Begum at the backdrop of nineteenth century Hyderabad.

The Discovery of India by Jawaharlal Nehru

Jawaharlal Nehru was India’s first prime minister and he wrote this from 1942 – 1946. This book was written by Nehru when he was imprisoned by the British. It is a tribute to the rich cultural heritage and legacy of the country. It provides an account of all major developments in the subcontinent from the period of Indus Valley Civilization to the last years of the British rule.

The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is an award-winning writer, novelist and poet. The book is about the tale of the epic Mahabharata, written from the perspective of Draupadi (Panchaali). It tells the story of the woman who fights, endures a lot living in a patriarchal world. It is a historical fiction which traces the historical tale and the life of Panchaali.

Mindtree’s old guard makes a comeback… as VC investors

The founders of IT company Mindtree are returning in a venture capitalist avatar, with their early-stage fund Mela Ventures making its first close of Rs 130 crore. The overall size of the fund is targeted at Rs 200 crore.

Former Mindtree chairman KK Natarajan, NS Parthasarthy are the managing partners of the fund. Former Mindtree CEO Rostow Ravanan will be on the investment committee.

The founders let go of executive responsibilities at Mindtree soon after a hostile takeover by L&T last year.

Six of the ten MindTree founders, including the three mentioned above, along with Subroto Bagchi, Janakiraman Srinivasan and Kalyan Banerjee have invested in the venture fund, while also raising funds from external investors.

“We will look to invest in the B2B and the tech space, since that is where our expertise lies,” said Natarajan.

The fund has already made makes first commitment to a startup in AR-VR space, he said.

Mela Ventures is a SEBI-approved Category-2 AIF fund for early stage companies.

The fund is backed by institutional investors, global technology leaders and startup investors.

“We are on a mission to build next-generation entrepreneurs out of India. Towards this mission, Mela Ventures will support early-stage companies using cutting edge technologies to build B2B solutions targeted at global enterprises,” Krishnakumar Natarajan, Managing Partner, Mela Ventures, said.

“We are extremely excited to get such an overwhelming response from investors even during challenging times. This gives us confidence that we have a right mission and are here with the right strategy,” he added.

Parthasarathy N.S, Managing Partner, Mela Ventures, said: “Many of our investors are technology professionals, who share the same passion as much as we do, for meaningful technology, startup community and building Indian entrepreneurs. We look forward to this new and exciting journey.”

The fund will focus on building a portfolio in areas, such as AI/ML, AR/VR, IoT, cloud migration and deep learning technologies.

IIT students watch their 3D avatars get degrees as convocations go digital amid lockdown

a group of people standing in front of a crowd

New Delhi: The students’ names were called out and they walked on to the stage, where the director stood waiting to hand them their degrees. The director delivered his traditional address too. The ceremony had all the trappings of a regular convocation, but it was actually just the closest-possible alternative IITs could organise for students inspite of pandemic.

Final-year IIT students in Bombay and Gandhinagar — robbed of their precious last few months in college, like thousands of others, but covid 19 lockdown — found some measure of solace Sunday as they were “handed out” their degrees in a live animation ceremony.

The participants were 3D avatars of the actual students and the ceremony was beamed live to their computers. And it created quite a buzz among students, who took to social media to post glimpses from the ceremony. 

“Even in online mode, the institute made sure to retain the feeling of the graduation ceremony for its students, right from the academic procession by the faculty members to invocation, Convocation addresses by the director and the chief guest, award of degrees and medals to their digital self, and convocation pledge followed by individual congratulatory messages from the IIT faculty and staff in various Indian languages,” a statement from IIT-Gandhinagar said. “The entire event was streamed online on IIT’s YouTube channel and Facebook page.” 

Mining company Rio Tinto executives lose bonuses over destruction of ancient caves

 a canyon with a mountain in the background

Mining giant Rio Tinto has decided to cut the bonuses of three executives over the destruction of 46,000-year-old sacred indigenous sites  in Australia.

Rio Tinto’s chief executive Jean-Sebastien Jacques will be losing a total of £2.7 million. Chris Salisbury, chief executive of iron ore, and Simone Niven, group executive of corporate relations, will also lose payouts of more than half a million pounds each.

These executives will remain in their roles.

“It is clear that no single individual or error was responsible for the destruction of the Juukan rockshelters,” said Rio Tinto chairman Simon Thompson.

“But there were numerous missed opportunities over almost a decade and the company failed to uphold one of Rio Tinto’s core values – respect for local communities and for their heritage.”

In May, Mining company Rio Tinto issued an apology after blowing up a 46,000-year-old sacred indigenous site with dynamites to expand Australia’s iron ore mine.

This mining company is one of the largest with vast operations in Australia. The iron ore mines account for more than half of its total revenue, and these ancient sites were above about eight million tonnes of high-grade iron ore, with an estimated value at the time of £75 million.

The site they blew up was situated in Juukan Gorge, in Western Australia state’s resource-rich Pilbara region. It had two cave systems which consisted of artefacts indicating tens of thousands of years of continuous human occupation.

According to CNN, grinding stones, a bone sharpened into a tool and 4,000-year-old braided hair were among almost 7,000 relics that had been discovered at the site. 

The site was demolished despite a seven-year legal battle by the local custodians of the land, the Puutu Kunti Kurama and Pinikura People, to protect the site.

The CEO of Rio Tinto Iron Ore, Chris Salisbury issued a statement on Sunday, which read: “We pay our respects to the Puutu Kunti Kurama and Pinikura People (PKKP).”

“We are sorry for the distress we have caused. Our relationship with the PKKP matters a lot to Rio Tinto, having worked together for many years,” the statement said.

“We will continue to work with the PKKP to learn from what has taken place and strengthen our partnership. As a matter of urgency, we are reviewing the plans of all other sites in the Juukan Gorge area.”

“At Juukan, in partnership with the PKKP, we followed a heritage approval process for more than 10 years. In 2014 we performed a large-scale exercise in the Juukan area to preserve significant cultural heritage artifacts, recovering approximately 7,000 objects,” it added.

Australia’s Federal Indigenous Affairs Minister Ken Wyatt condemned the “destruction” and said that it should not have occurred and ensure that it does not happen again.

He said: “The West Australian State Government needs to ensure that their legislation and approvals processes protect our Indigenous cultural heritage. It seems quite clear, that in this instance, the legislation has failed.”

Diabetes

Diabetes is the most common word spoken across the globe. Fatal and contagious than any of the disease ever to be seen by humanity. It doesn’t affect directly but surely undermines the body such that various other diseases get a free pass. It is a major public health problem that is approaching epidemic proportions globally. Worldwide, the prevalence of chronic, non-communicable diseases is increasing at an alarming rate. About 18 million people die every year from cardiovascular disease, for which diabetes and hypertension are major predisposing factors. Diabetes is a number of diseases that involve problems with the hormone insulin, which occurs when your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high. Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes from the food you eat. Normally, the pancreas (an organ behind the stomach) releases insulin to help your body store and use the sugar and fat from the food you eat. Diabetes can occur when the pancreas produces very little or no insulin, or when the body does not respond appropriately to insulin. Glucose then stays in your blood and doesn’t reach your cells. Therefore weakness, dizziness are prevalent among the diabetic. As of yet, there is no cure. People with diabetes need to manage their disease to stay healthy. Different kinds of diabetes can occur, and managing the condition depends on the type. Not all forms of diabetes stem from a person being overweight or leading an inactive lifestyle. In fact, some are present from childhood.
Three major diabetes types can develop, Type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes.

  • Type I diabetes: Also known as juvenile diabetes, this type occurs when the body fails to produce insulin. People with type I diabetes are insulin-dependent, which means they must take artificial insulin daily to stay alive.
  • Type 2 diabetes: Type 2 diabetes affects the way the body uses insulin. While the body still makes insulin, unlike in type I, the cells in the body do not respond to it as effectively as they once did. This is the most common type of diabetes, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, and it has strong links with obesity.
  • Gestational diabetes: This type occurs in women during pregnancy when the body can become less sensitive to insulin. Gestational diabetes does not occur in all women and usually resolves after giving birth.

Less common types of diabetes include monogenic diabetes and cystic fibrosis-related diabetes.
Since there is no cure, it doesn’t mean that you can’t live your life up to the fullest. Just a tight schedule can prove propitious. Some snacks to include in your diet to keep a close watch on the glucometer are-

  • Fresh fruit and cheese- There’s a reason why the French are known for their fantastic fruit and cheese boards! Cheese is an excellent source of protein and pairs well with carbohydrate-rich fruit to provide energy without spiking blood sugars. Good pairings include apples with cheddar, Gouda and pears, or fresh mozzarella with peaches.
  • Crunchy chickpeas- Gone are the days when chickpeas were only useful for making hummus! Chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans) are an excellent source of fiber and protein and make for a nutrient-rich, mid-day snack. When roasted long enough, chickpeas become light and crunchy and make for a great replacement for potato chips.
  • Hardboiled eggs- Eggs are a low-calorie snack packed with valuable nutrients, such as B vitamins, zinc, calcium, and protein. Hardboiled eggs make for a healthy, portable snack that will keep you full between meals. Pair with a small piece of fresh fruit if blood sugars are dipping low.
  • Popcorn- Most popular for movie nights, popcorn is full of fiber and an excellent snack that won’t send blood sugars surge. However, not all popcorn is made with the same ingredients. Traditionally, microwaved popcorn can contain a ton of added sugars or partially-hydrogenated oils that take a toll on heart health. Look for brands that air pop their popcorn or use avocado oil, which is a source of heart-healthy unsaturated fat. Save the buttery topping or kettle corn varieties for special occasions.

There are several tips to fight diabetes. You can’t overcome this disease but surely could make peace with it. Diabetes is like an arduous trainer. He makes you do things that you should do to stay healthy and have a prolonged life.

  • Get moving – Exercise helps build muscle and lower blood sugars. If going to a gym seems infeasible then you can consider purchasing a few weights since the best way to control your sugars and your scale is to do both aerobic and anaerobic exercise. Besides, adding a 15- to 20-minute post-meal stroll can help fight sugar spikes.  
  • Embrace your blood sugars, good and bad – No one likes to have high blood sugar. But even if you’ve had a few highs, don’t act crestfallen and abandon tracking your glucose readings. Along with helping your doctor determine if your diet plan and medications are working, a record of blood sugar readings will help you to assess how food, activities, and stress impact your body. Do you need to add five minutes to your walk after eating pepperoni pizza? Are your bedtime snacks keeping you from morning lows? Only your blood glucose knows.
  • Take a break – Consider yoga or meditation. Stress heavily affects blood sugars. Take time to read a book, take a nap, or talk to friends.  
  • Maintain cholesterol-  You have two kinds of cholesterol in your blood: LDL and HDL. LDL or “bad” cholesterol can build up and clog your blood vessels. Too much bad cholesterol can cause a heart attack or stroke. HDL or “good” cholesterol helps remove the “bad” cholesterol from your blood vessels.
  • Refrain from smoking-  No smoking is especially important for people with diabetes because of both smoking and diabetes narrow blood vessels. Blood vessel narrowing makes your heart work harder. E-cigarettes aren’t a safe option either.