Sunday, August 26, 2018

Cultural references

The islands are prominently featured in Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes mystery, The Sign of the Four, as well as in M. M. Kaye's Death in the Andamans. The magistrate in Lady Gregory's play Spreading the News had formerly served in the islands. Marianne Wiggins' novel, John Dollar (1989), is set on one of the islands; the characters begin an expedition from Burma to celebrate King George's birthday and after an earthquake and tsunami it becomes a grim survival story. A principal character in the book Six Suspects by Vikas Swarup is from the Andaman Islands. Kaalapani (Malayalam) and Sirai Chaalai  (Tamil), a 1996 Indian film by Priyadarshan, depicts the Indian freedom struggle and the lives of prisoners in the Cellular Jail in Port Blair. Island's End is a 2011 novel by Padma Venkatraman about the training of an indigenous shaman.


A young Onge mother with her child
As of 2011, the population of the Andaman was 343,125, having grown from 50,000 in 1960. The bulk of the population originates from immigrants who came to the island since the colonial times, mainly of Bengali, Hindustani and Tamil backgrounds.

Indigenous Andamanese
Main article: Andamanese people
Of the people who live in the Andaman Islands, a small minority of about 1,000 are the so-called Andamanese, the aboriginal inhabitants (adivasi) of the islands. By the 1850s when they first came into sustained contact by outside groups, there were estimated 7,000 Andamanese, divided into the following major groups:

Great Andamanese
Jangil (or Rutland Jarawa)
As the numbers of settlers from the mainland increased (at first mostly prisoners and involuntary indentured labourers, later purposely recruited farmers), these indigenous people lost territory and numbers in the face of punitive expeditions by British troops, land encroachment and various epidemic diseases. Presently, there remain only approximately 400–450 indigenous Andamanese. The Jangil were soon extinct. The Great Andamanese were originally 10 distinct tribes with 5,000 people in total; most of the tribes are extinct, and the survivors, now just 52, speak mostly Hindi.The Onge are reduced to less than 100 people. Only the Jarawa and Sentinelese still maintain a steadfast independence and refuse most attempts at contact; their numbers are uncertain but estimated to be in the low hundreds.

Fact about Andman nikobar

The Andaman Islands form an archipelago in the Bay of Bengal between India, to the west, and Myanmar, to the north and east. Most are part of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands Union Territory of India, while a small number in the north of the archipelago, including the Coco Islands, belong to Myanmar.

The Andaman Islands are home to the Andamanese, a group of indigenous peoples including the Sentinelese, who have had little contact with any other people.

Are we ready for ALIEN contact? Former MoD man warns 'we're NOT and it's a mistake'

AFTER Germany revealed it has no contingency plans ready in the event of first contact with aliens, a former Ministry of Defence (MoD) insider told nations are making a “big mistake” by not preparing.
Nick Pope, who worked for the British Government between 1985 and 2006, has claimed neither the UK nor any other country is truly prepared for whatever may be lurking in the void of space.

Between 1991 and 1994 Mr Pope examined UFO sightings for the MoD in a bid to determine if they had any defence-related significance.

The MoD pulled the plug on the UFO project in 2009 and Mr Pope has since extensively toured the world, giving lectures at seminars and alien-related conferences.

Which is why he told he was not surprised to hear this month the German government has no plan ready for the possibility of first contact with extraterrestrials.

Earlier in August, the German Ministry of Economics said in a statement it considered first contact “extremely unlikely according to current scientific knowledge”.

Mr Pope has now said people are quick to dismiss calls for the creation of contingency plans.

He told “I was interested but not surprised to see that Germany has no official plan for what to do in the event of encountering extraterrestrials.

“The UK doesn't have a plan either – nobody does – and I think this is a big mistake.

Alien news: Nick Pope believes nations are not prepared for the eventuality of first contact (Image: NICK POPE/GETTY)
“People respond to the suggestion of a plan in two ways. Sceptics say it's a waste of time, while conspiracy theorists say there is a plan but the government isn't telling us.”

Mr Pope is certain the UK does not have a contingency plan drafted because odds are he would have been the very person to write it up.

The UFO expert said scepticism aside, it would be prudent for the Government to prepare for what could be the single “most high-impact scenario you could imagine” – meeting aliens.

According to Mr Pope, the Cabinet Office with input from the Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser and the MoD should coordinate this effort.

He outlined three main scenarios that would fall under the umbrella of alien first contact.

This would include detecting radio signals from distant alien civilisations, discovering alien microbial life within the boundaries of the solar system or the arrival of alien ships and probes over Earth.

Mr Pope said: “Some of the issues that need to be addressed in a plan include the potential biological hazard posed by extraterrestriallife,and the question of whether we should reply to any message we receive from aliens – and if so, who should reply and what should they say.

“But there are more subtle issues. What if we pick up a message from another civilisation but can't decipher it? Should it be published?

“Given that it might contain advanced scientific and technological information that someone could weaponise, probably not.

Aliens news: The former MoD man said countries need to draft appropriate legislation (Image: GETTY)

Alien news: Aliens could exist as intelligent species or microbial life (Image: GETTY)
“There are bits and pieces of existing guidance that can help us with all this.”

Mr Pope said US space agency NASA has some guidance concerning “planetary protection” from potential extraterrestrial contaminants.

But the UFO expert stressed little is being done in terms of binding legislation to cover these issues in a “single document”, on a national and international scale.

Mr Pope said he is ready to draft such a contingency plant for further consultation with appropriate experts and stakeholders.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Cultural of kerla

                          A Kathakali artist

 During Onam, Kerala's biggest celebration, Keralites create pookkalam (floral carpet) designs in front of their houses.

                             Onam Sadya

               A mohiniattam performance
 Theyyam, The ritual art of North Malabar

 Thunchaththu Ramanujan Ezhuthachan, 17-century poet
                   Thrissur Pooram festival

The culture of Kerala is composite and cosmopolitan in nature and it is an integral part of Indian culture.It is synthesis of Aryan and Dravidian cultures, defined by its antiquity and the organic continuity sustained by the Malayali people. It has been elaborated through centuries of contact with neighbouring and overseas cultures. However, the geographical insularity of Kerala from the rest of the country has resulted in the development of a distinctive lifestyle, art, architecture, language, literature and social institutions.Over 10,000 festivals are celebrated in the state every year.The Malayalam calendar, a solar calendar started from 825 CE in Kerala, finds common usage in planning agricultural and religious activities.

Festivals :
Many of the temples in Kerala hold festivals on specific days of the year. A common characteristic of these festivals is the hoisting of a holy flag which is brought down on the final day of the festival after immersing the deity. Some festivals include Poorams, the best known of these being the Thrissur Pooram. "Elephants, firework displays and huge crowds" are the major attractions of Thrissur Pooram.Other known festivals are Makaravilakku, Chinakkathoor Pooram Nenmara Vallangi Velaand Utsavam.[citation needed] Temples that can afford it will usually involve at least one richly caparisoned elephant as part of the festivities

Pre-History of kerla

Pre-history of Kerala

A dolmen erected by Neolithic people in Marayur
A substantial portion of Kerala may have been under the sea in ancient times. Marine fossils have been found in an area near Changanacherry, thus supporting the hypothesis.Pre-historical archaeological findings include dolmens of the Neolithic era in the Marayur area of the Idukki district. They are locally known as "muniyara", derived from muni (hermit or sage) and ara (dolmen).Rock engravings in the Edakkal Caves, in Wayanad date back to the Neolithic era around 6000 BCE.Archaeological studies have identified Mesolithic, Neolithic and Megalithic sites in Kerala. The studies point to the development of ancient Kerala society and its culture beginning from the Paleolithic Age, through the Mesolithic, Neolithic and Megalithic Ages. Foreign cultural contacts have assisted this cultural formation; historians suggest a possible relationship with Indus Valley Civilization  during the late Bronze Age and early Iron Age.

Ancient period

Kerala has been a major spice exporter since 3000 BCE, according to Sumerian records and it is still referred to as the "Garden of Spices" or as the "Spice Garden of India".Kerala's spices attracted ancient Babylonians, Assyrians and Egyptians to the Malabar Coast in the 3rd and 2nd millennia BCE. Phoenicians  established trade with Kerala during this period. The Land of Keralaputra was one of the four independent kingdoms in southern India during Ashoka's time, the others being Chola, Pandya, and Satiyaputra. Scholars hold that Keralaputra is an alternate name of the Cheras, the first dominant dynasty based in Kerala.These territories once shared a common language and culture, within an area known as Tamilakam.Along with the Ay kingdom in the south and the Ezhimala kingdom in the north, the Cheras formed the ruling kingdoms of Kerala in the early years of the Common Era (CE). It is noted in Sangam literature that the Chera king Uthiyan Cheralathan ruled most of modern Kerala from his capital in Kuttanad, and controlled the port of Muziris, but its southern tip was in the kingdom of Pandyas,which had a trading port sometimes identified in ancient Western sources as Nelcynda (or Neacyndi) in Quilon.The lesser known Ays  and Mushikas kingdoms lay to the south and north of the Chera regions respectively.

Silk Road map. The spice trade was mainly along the water routes (blue).
In the last centuries BCE the coast became important to the Greeks and Romans for its spices, especially black pepper. The Cheras had trading links with China, West Asia, Egypt, Greece, and the Roman Empire.In foreign-trade circles the region was known as Male or Malabar.Muziris, Berkarai, and Nelcynda were among the principal ports at that time. The value of Rome's annual trade with the region was estimated at around 50,000,000 sesterces;contemporary Sangam literature describes Roman ships coming to Muziris in Kerala, laden with gold to exchange for pepper. One of the earliest western traders to use the monsoon winds to reach Kerala was Eudoxus of Cyzicus, around 118 or 166 BCE, under the patronage of Ptolemy VIII, king of the Hellenistic Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt. Roman establishments in the port cities of the region, such as a temple of Augustus and barracks for garrisoned Roman soldiers, are marked in the Tabula Peutingeriana; the only surviving map of the Roman cursus publicus.

Merchants from West Asia and Southern Europe established coastal posts and settlements in Kerala.The Israeli (Jewish) connection with Kerala started in 573 BCE.Arabs also had trade links with Kerala, starting before the 4th century BCE, as Herodotus (484–413 BCE) noted that goods brought by Arabs from Kerala were sold to the Israelis [Hebrew (Jews)] at Eden. Israelis intermarried with local (Cheras Drav)

History of kerla


Parasurama, surrounded by settlers, commanding Varuna (the Hindu God of water) to part the seas and reveal Kerala
According to Hindu mythology, the lands of Kerala were recovered from the sea by the axe-wielding warrior sage Parasurama, the sixth avatar of Vishnu (hence, Kerala is also called Parasurama Kshetram ("The Land of Parasurama"). Parasurama threw his axe across the sea, and the water receded as far as it reached. According to legend, this new area of land extended from Gokarna to Kanyakumari. The land which rose from sea was filled with salt and unsuitable for habitation; so Parasurama invoked the Snake King Vasuki, who spat holy poison and converted the soil into fertile lush green land. Out of respect, Vasuki and all snakes were appointed as protectors and guardians of the land. The legend was later expanded, and found literary expression in the 17th or 18th century with Keralolpathi, which traces the origin of aspects of early Kerala society, such as land tenure and administration, to the story of Parasurama.In medieval times Kuttuvan  may have emulated the Parasurama tradition by throwing his spear into the sea to symbolise his lordship over it.

Another much earlier Puranic character associated with Kerala is Mahabali, an Asura  and a prototypical just king, who ruled the earth from Kerala. He won the war against the Devas, driving them into exile. The Devas pleaded before Lord Vishnu, who took his fifth incarnation as Vamana and pushed Mahabali down to Patala (the netherworld) to placate the Devas. There is a belief that, once a year during the Onam festival, Mahabali returns to Kerala.The Matsya Purana, among the oldest of the 18 Puranas,uses the Malaya Mountains of Kerala (and Tamil Nadu) as the setting for the story of Matsya, the first incarnation of Vishnu, and Manu, the first man and the king of the region.

Etymology of Kerala


The name Kerala has an uncertain etymology. One popular theory derives Kerala from Kera  ("coconut tree" in Malayalam) and alam  ("land"); thus "land of coconuts",which is a nickname for the state, used by locals, due to abundance of coconut trees.The word Kerala is first recorded as Keralaputra in a 3rd-century BCE rock inscription left by the Maurya emperor Ashoka (274–237 BCE), one of his edicts pertaining to welfare. The inscription refers to the local ruler as Keralaputra (Sanskrit for "son of Kerala"); or "son of Chera[s]". This contradicts the theory that Kera is from "coconut tree".At that time, one of three states in the region was called Cheralam in Classical Tamil: Chera and Kera are variants of the same word. The word Cheral refers to the oldest known dynasty of Kerala kings and is derived from the Proto-Tamil-Malayalam word for "lake".

The earliest Sanskrit text to mention Kerala is the Aitareya Aranyaka of the Rigveda. Kerala is also mentioned in the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, the two Hindu epics. The Skanda Purana mentions the ecclesiastical office of the Thachudaya Kaimal who is referred to as Manikkam Keralar, synonymous with the deity of the Koodalmanikyam  temple. Keralam may stem from the Classical Tamil cherive-alam ("declivity of a hill or a mountain slope")or chera alam ("Land of the Cheras"). The Greco-Roman trade map Periplus Maris Erythraei refers to Keralaputra as Celobotra.

Interesting fact about kerla

Kerala (/ˈkɛrələ/) is a state on the southwestern, Malabar Coast of India. It was formed on 1 November 1956 following the States Reorganisation Act by combining Malayalam-speaking regions. Spread over 38,863 km2 (15,005 sq mi), it is bordered by Karnataka to the north and northeast, Tamil Nadu to the east and south, and the Lakshadweep Sea to the west. With 33,387,677 inhabitants as per the 2011 Census, Kerala is the thirteenth-largest Indian state by population. It is divided into 14 districts with the capital being Thiruvananthapuram. Malayalam is the most widely spoken language and is also the official language of the state.


The Chera Dynasty was the first prominent kingdom based in Kerala. The Ay kingdom in the deep south and the Ezhimala kingdom in the north formed the other kingdoms in the early years of the Common Era (CE or AD). The region had been a prominent spice exporter since 3000 BCE. The region's prominence in trade was noted in the works of Pliny as well as the Periplus around 100 CE. In the 15th century, the spice trade attracted Portuguese traders to Kerala, and paved the way for European colonisation of India. At the time of Indian independence movement in the early 20th century, there were two major princely states in Kerala-Travancore State and the Kingdom of Cochin. They united to form the state of Thiru-Kochi in 1949. The Malabar region, in the northern part of Kerala had been a part of the Madras province of British India, which later became a part of the Madras State post-independence. After the States Reorganisation Act, 1956, the modern-day state of Kerala was formed by merging the Malabar district of Madras State (excluding Gudalur taluk of Nilgiris district, Topslip, the Attappadi Forest east of Anakatti), the state of Thiru-Kochi (excluding four southern taluks of Kanyakumari district, Shenkottai and Tenkasi taluks), and the taluk of Kasaragod (now Kasaragod District) in South Kanara (Tulunad) which was a part of Madras State.

The economy of Kerala is the 12th-largest state economy in India with ₹7.73 lakh crore  (US$110 billion) in gross domestic product  and a per capita GDP of ₹163,000  (US$2,400).Kerala has the lowest positive population growth rate in India, 3.44%; the highest Human Development Index (HDI), 0.712 in 2015; the highest literacy rate, 93.91% in the 2011 census; the highest life expectancy, 77 years; and the highest sex ratio, 1,084 women per 1,000 men. The state has witnessed significant emigration, especially to Arab states of the Persian Gulf  during the Gulf Boom of the 1970s and early 1980s, and its economy depends significantly on remittances from a large Malayali  expatriate community. Hinduism is practised by more than half of the population, followed by Islam and Christianity. The culture is a synthesis of Aryan, Dravidian, Arab, and European cultures, developed over millennia, under influences from other parts of India and abroad.

The production of pepper and natural rubber  contributes significantly to the total national output. In the agricultural sector, coconut, tea, coffee, cashew and spices are important. The state's coastline extends for 595 kilometres (370 mi), and around 1.1 million people in the state are dependent on the fishery industry which contributes 3% to the state's income. The state has the highest media exposure in India with newspapers publishing in nine languages, mainly English and Malayalam. Kerala is one of the prominent tourist destinations of India, with backwaters, hill stations, beaches, Ayurvedic tourism and tropical greenery as its major attractions.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Culture and societyof Pakistan

Culture and society

Main articles: British heritage of Pakistan, Culture of Pakistan, and Public holidays in Pakistan

Truck art is a distinctive feature of Pakistani culture.
Civil society in Pakistan is largely hierarchical, emphasising local cultural etiquette and traditional Islamic values that govern personal and political life. The basic family unit is the extended family, although for socio-economic reasons there has been a growing trend towards nuclear families. The traditional dress for both men and women is the Shalwar Kameez; trousers, jeans, and shirts are also popular among men.[68] In recent decades, the middle class has increased to around 35 million and the upper and upper-middle classes to around 17 million, and power is shifting from rural landowners to the urbanised elites. Pakistani festivals, including Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Azha, Ramazan, Christmas, Easter, Holi, and Diwali, are mostly religious in origin.Increasing globalisation has resulted in Pakistan ranking 56th on the A.T. Kearney/FP Globalization Index.

Clothing, arts, and fashion
Main articles: Pakistani clothing, Shalwar kameez, Sherwani, Jinnah cap, and Peshawari chappal
The Shalwar Kameez is the national dress of Pakistan and is worn by both men and women in all four provinces: Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa as well as in FATA and Azad Kashmir. Each province has its own style of Shalwar Kameez. Pakistanis wear clothes in a range of exquisite colours and designs and in type of fabric (silk, chiffon, cotton, etc.).Besides the national dress, domestically tailored suits  and neckties are often worn by men, and are customary in offices, schools, and social gatherings.

The fashion industry has flourished in the changing environment of the fashion world. Since Pakistan came into being, its fashion has evolved in different phases and developed a unique identity. Today, Pakistani fashion is a combination of traditional and modern dress and has become a mark of Pakistani culture. Despite modern trends, regional and traditional forms of dress have developed their own significance as a symbol of native tradition. This regional fashion continues to evolve into both more modern and purer forms. The Pakistan Fashion Design Council based in Lahore organizes PFDC Fashion Week and the Fashion Pakistan Council based in Karachi organizes Fashion Pakistan Week. Pakistan's first fashion week was held in November 2009.

Media and entertainment
Main articles: Cinema of Pakistan, Media of Pakistan, Music of Pakistan, History of Pakistani pop music, Theatre of Pakistan, and Pakistani dramas
The private print media, state-owned Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV), and Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) for radio  were the dominant media outlets until the beginning of the 21st century. Pakistan now has a large network of domestic, privately owned 24-hour news media and television channels.A 2016 report by the Reporters Without Borders ranked Pakistan 147th on the Press Freedom Index, while at the same time terming the Pakistani media "among the freest in Asia when it comes to covering the squabbling among politicians."BBC calls the Pakistani media "among the most outspoken in South Asia". Pakistani media has also played a vital role in exposing corruption.

The Lollywood, Kariwood, Punjabi, and Pashto  film industry is based in Karachi, Lahore, and Peshawar. While Bollywood films were banned from public cinemas from 1965 until 2008, they have remained an important part of popular culture.In contrast to the ailing Pakistani film industry, Urdu televised dramas and theatrical performances continue to be popular, as many entertainment media outlets air them regularly. Urdu dramas  dominate the television entertainment industry, which has launched critically acclaimed miniseries and featured popular actors and actresses since the 1990s. In the 1960s–1970s, pop musi

What is Colonial period ? Interesting fact about Colonial period in Pakistan

Colonial period
Main articles: Colonial India, Aligarh movement, and British Raj

Sir Syed Ahmad Khan (1817–1898), whose vision  formed the basis of Pakistan

Muhammad Ali Jinnah (1876–1948) served as Pakistan's first Governor-General and the leader of the Pakistan Movement
The gradual decline of the Mughal Empire in the early 18th century enabled the Sikh Empire to control larger areas until the British East India Company gained ascendancy over South Asia.A rebellion in 1857 called the Sepoy mutiny of Bengal was the region's major armed struggle against the British Empire and Queen Victoria.Divergence in the relationship between Hinduism and Islam created a major rift in British India that led to motivated religious violence in British India. The language controversy further escalated the tensions between Hindus and Muslims.The Hindu renaissance witnessed an awakening of intellectualism in traditional Hinduism and saw the emergence of more assertive influence in the social and political spheres in British India. An intellectual movement to counter the Hindu renaissance  was led by Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, who helped found the All-India Muslim League in 1901 and envisioned, as well as advocated for, the two-nation theory.In contrast to the Indian National Congress's anti-British efforts, the Muslim League was a pro-British movement whose political program inherited the British values that would shape Pakistan's future civil society. In events during World War I, British Intelligence foiled an anti-English conspiracy involving the nexus of Congress and the German Empire.[citation needed] The largely non-violent independence struggle led by the Indian Congress engaged millions of protesters in mass campaigns of civil disobedience in the 1920s and 1930s against the British Empire.

Over 10 million people were uprooted from their homeland and travelled on foot, bullock carts, and trains to their promised new home during the Partition of British India. During the partition, between 200,000 and 2,000,000 people were killed in the retributive genocide.
The Muslim League slowly rose to mass popularity in the 1930s amid fears of under-representation and neglect of British Muslims  in politics. In his presidential address of 29 December 1930, Allama Iqbal called for "the amalgamation of North-West Muslim-majority Indian states" consisting of Punjab, North-West Frontier Province, Sind, and Baluchistan.The perceived neglect of Muslim interests by Congress led British provincial governments during the period of 1937–39 convinced Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan to espouse the two-nation theory and led the Muslim League to adopt the Lahore Resolution of 1940 presented by Sher-e-Bangla A.K. Fazlul Haque, popularly known as the Pakistan Resolution.In World War II, Jinnah and British-educated founding fathers in the Muslim League supported the United Kingdom's war efforts, countering opposition against it whilst working towards Sir Syed's vision.

Top three intresting fact about of Pakistan

Early and medieval age
Main articles: Indus Valley Civilization, Vedic Period, Mauryan Empire, Indo-Greek Kingdom, Gupta Empire, Pala Empire, Sikh Empire, and Mughal Empire

Indus Priest King Statue from Mohenjo-Daro.
Some of the earliest ancient human civilisations in South Asia originated from areas encompassing present-day Pakistan. The earliest known inhabitants in the region were Soanian during the Lower Paleolithic, of whom stone tools have been found in the Soan Valley of Punjab.The Indus region, which covers most of present day Pakistan, was the site of several successive ancient cultures including the Neolithic Mehrgarhand the Bronze Age Indus Valley Civilisation(2,800–1,800 BCE) at Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro.

Standing Buddha from Gandhara, Greco-Buddhist art, 1st-2nd century AD.
The Vedic period (1500–500 BCE) was characterised by an Indo-Aryan culture; during this period the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed, and this culture later became well established in the region.Multan was an important Hindu pilgrimage centre.The Vedic civilisation flourished in the ancient Gandhāran city of Takṣaśilā, now Taxila in the Punjab, which was founded around 1000 BCE.Successive ancient empires and kingdoms ruled the region: the Persian Achaemenid Empire (around 519 BCE), Alexander the Great's empire in 326 BCEand the Maurya Empire, founded by Chandragupta Maurya and extended by Ashoka the Great, until 185 BCE. The Indo-Greek Kingdom founded by Demetrius of Bactria (180–165 BCE) included Gandhara and Punjab and reached its greatest extent under Menander (165–150 BCE), prospering the Greco-Buddhist culture in the region.Taxila had one of the earliest universities and centres of higher education in the world, which was established during the late Vedic period in 6th century BCE. The school consisted of several monasteries without large dormitories or lecture halls where the religious instruction was provided on an individualistic basis.The ancient university was documented by the invading forces of Alexander the Great, "the like of which had not been seen in Greece," and was also recorded by Chinese pilgrims in the 4th or 5th century CE.

At its zenith, the Rai Dynasty (489–632 CE) of Sindh ruled this region and the surrounding territories.The Pala Dynasty was the last Buddhist empire, which, under Dharmapala  and Devapala, stretched across South Asia from what is now Bangladesh through Northern India to Pakistan.

The Arab conqueror Muhammad bin Qasim  conquered Sindh in 711 CE. The Pakistan government's official chronology claims this as the time when the foundation of Pakistan was laid but the concept of Pakistan came in 19th century.The Early Medieval period (642–1219 CE) witnessed the spread of Islam in the region. During this period, Sufi missionaries played a pivotal role in converting a majority of the regional Buddhist and Hindu population to Islam.These developments set the stage for the rule of several successive Muslim empires in the region, including the Ghaznavid Empire (975–1187 CE), the Ghorid Kingdom, and the Delhi Sultanate (1206–1526 CE). The Lodi dynasty, the last of the Delhi Sultanate, was replaced by the Mughal Empire (1526–1857 CE).

Badshahi Mosque, Lahore
The Mughals introduced Persian literature and high culture, establishing the roots of Indo-Persian culture in the region.From the region of modern-day Pakistan, key cities during the Mughal rule were Lahore and Thatta,both of which were chosen as the site of impressive Mughal buildings. In the early 16th century, the region remained under the Mughal Empire ruled by Muslim emperors. By the early 18th century, increasing European influence contributed to the slow disintegration of the Mughal Empire as the lines between commercial and political dominance b

Intresting Fact about Pakistan

Pakistan (Urdu: پاکِستان‬‎), officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan (Urdu: اِسلامی جمہوریہ پاکِستان‬‎), is a country in South Asia. It is the fifth-most populous country with a population exceeding 212,742,631 people.In area, it is the 33rd-largest country, spanning 881,913 square kilometres (340,509 square miles). Pakistan has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by India  to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China in the far northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor in the northwest, and also shares a maritime border  with Oman.

The territory that now constitutes Pakistan was the site of several ancient cultures, including the Mehrgarh of the Neolithic and the Bronze Age Indus Valley Civilisation, and was later home to kingdoms ruled by people of different faiths and cultures, including Hindus, Indo-Greeks, Muslims, Turco-Mongols, Afghans, and Sikhs. The area has been ruled by numerous empires and dynasties, including the Persian Achaemenid Empire, Alexander III of Macedon, the Indian Mauryan Empire, the Arab Umayyad Caliphate, the Gupta Empire,the Delhi Sultanate, the Mongol Empire, the Mughal Empire, the Afghan Durrani Empire, the Sikh Empire  (partially), and, most recently, the British Empire.

Pakistan is the only country to have been created in the name of Islam. As a result of the Pakistan Movement led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah and the Indian subcontinent's struggle for independence, Pakistan was created in 1947 as an independent homeland for Indian Muslims.It is an ethnically and linguistically diverse country, with a similarly diverse geography and wildlife. Initially a dominion, Pakistan adopted a constitution in 1956, becoming an Islamic republic. An ethnic civil war in 1971 resulted in the secession of East Pakistan as the new country of Bangladesh. In 1973 Pakistan adopted a new constitution establishing, alongside its pre-existing parliamentary republic status, a federal government based in Islamabad  consisting of four provinces and three federal territories. The new constitution also stipulated that all laws are to conform to the injunctions of Islam as laid down in the Quran  and Sunnah.

A regionaand middle power,Pakistan has the sixth-largest standing armed forces in the world and is also a nuclear power as well as a declared nuclear-weapons  state, the second in South Asia and the only nation in the Muslim world to have that status. Pakistan has a semi-industrialised economy with a well-integrated agriculture sector and a growing services sector. The Pakistani economy is the 24th-largest in the world in terms of purchasing power and the 41st-largest in terms of nominal GDP  (World Bank). It is ranked among the emerging and growth-leading economies of the world,and is backed by one of the world's largest and fastest-growing middle class.

Pakistan's political history since independence has been characterized by periods of military rule, political instability and conflicts with India. The country continues to face challenging problems, including overpopulation, terrorism, poverty, illiteracy, and corruption. Pakistan is a member of the United Nations, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the Non-Aligned Movement, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the Commonwealth of Nations, the Economic Cooperation Organisation, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, the Developing Eight, and the G20 developing nations, Group of 24, Group of 77, and ECOSOC. It is also an associate member of CERN. Pakistan is a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol, the Paris Agreement, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Do you know this best writer Ismay Chughtai

Ismat Chughtai (21 August 1915–24 October 1991) was an Indian Urdu language writer. Beginning in the 1930s, she wrote on themes including female sexuality and feminity, middle-class gentility, and class conflict, often from a Marxist perspective. With a style characterised by literary realism, Chughtai established herself as a significant voice in the Urdu literature of the twentieth century, and in 1976 was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India

Early life and career beginnings (1915–41`)

Ismat Chughtai was born on 21 August 1915 in Badayun,Uttar Pradesh to Nusrat Khanam and Mirza Qaseem Baig Chughtai;she was ninth of ten children–six brothers, four sisters. The family shifted homes frequently as Chughtai's father was a civil servant; she spent her childhood in cities including JodhpurAgra, and Aligarh, mostly in the company of her brothers as her sisters had all got married while she was still very young. Chughtai described the influence of her brothers as an important factor which influenced her personality in her formative years. She thought of her second-eldest brother, Mirza Azim Beg Chughtai, a novelist, as a mentor. The family eventually settled in Agra, after Chughtai's father retired from the Indian Civil Services.

Chughtai received her primary education at the Women's College at the Aligarh Muslim University and graduated from Isabella Thoburn College with a Bachelor of Artsdegree in 1940. Despite strong resistance from her family, she completed her Bachelor of Education degree from the Aligarh Muslim University the following year. It was during this period that Chughtai became associated with the Progressive Writers' Association, having attended her first meeting in 1936 where she met Rashid Jahan, one of the leading female writers involved with the movement, who was later credited for inspiring Chughtai to write "realistic, challenging female characters".Chughtai began writing in private around the same time, but did not seek publication for her work until much later.

Chughtai wrote a drama entitled Fasādī فسادی (The Troublemaker) for the Urdu magazine Saqi ساقّی in 1939, which was her first published work. Upon publication, readers mistook it as a play by Chughtai's brother Azeem Beg, written using a pseudonym.Following that, she started writing for other publications and newspapers. Some of her early works included Bachpan بچپن (Childhood), an autobiographical piece, Kafirکافر, her first short-story, and Dheet ڈھیٹ (Stubborn), her only soliloquy, among others. In response to a story that she wrote for a magazine, Chughtai was told that her work was blasphemous and insulted the Quran.She, nonetheless, continued writing about "things she would hear of". Her continued association with the Progressive Writers' Movement had significant bearings on her writing style; she was particularly intrigued by Angaray انگارے, a compilation of short-stories by the progressive writers. Other early influences included such writers as William Sydney PorterGeorge Bernard Shaw, and Anton Chekhov.Kalyān (Buds) and Cōtēn (Wounds), two of Chughtai's earliest collections of short stories, were published in 1941 and 1942 respectively.m Her first novellaZiddi, which was first published in 1941 was later translated into English as Wild at Heart.

Major scientific breakthrough: International team of scientists including 18 Indians decode complex wheat genome

Congratulating the Indian team involved in the research, Science and Technology Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan that this proves that our scientists are capable of matching the best in the world in any discipline.

Photo: Pixabay
In a major scientific breakthrough, a team of international researchers have decoded the wheat genome. The international team includes 18 scientists from India. Decoding the wheat genome had been considered insurmountable so far. The information generated will help in identifying genes controlling complex agronomic traits such as yield, grain quality, resistance to diseases and pests, as well as tolerance to drought, heat, water logging and salinity.

Congratulating the Indian team involved in the research, Science and Technology Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan that this proves that our scientists are capable of matching the best in the world in any discipline. He also hailed the breakthrough adding that "cracking of the bread wheat genome will go a long way in developing climate-resilient wheat and help tide over possible impact of climate change on farm output."

In an article published in 'Science', the authors said, the DNA sequence has been ordered and it represents the highest quality genome sequence generated to date for the bread wheat. The reference genome covers 94 per cent (14.5 Gb) of the entire wheat genome. The bread wheat has a complex hexaploid genome which is 40 times larger than that of the rice genome and 5 times larger than the human genome.

The research article is authored by more than 200 scientists from 73 research institutions in 20 countries. A team of 18 Indian scientists co-authoring this paper, led by Dr Kuldeep Singh at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) Ludhiana, Professor JP Khurana at the University of Delhi South Campus, and Professor Nagendra Singh at ICAR-National Research Centre on Plant Biotechnology, Delhi, contributed to the decoding of Chromosome 2A of the wheat genome. This project was financially supported by the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India.

The availability of high quality reference genome would accelerate the breeding of climate-resilient wheat varieties to feed the ever-increasing world population and help address global food security.

Five challenges a voyager on ‘Gaganyaan’ faces

Rockets are extreme machines. Travelling in a rocket is like sitting on an exploding bomb. Photo: PTI
New Delhi: An Indian astronaut, be it man or woman, will be off to a space odyssey by 2022 on board ‘Gaganyaan’, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in his Independence Day address earlier this month.

Modi said by the time India celebrated its 75th year of Independence in 2022, “and if possible even before, an Indian son or daughter” would undertake a manned space mission on board ‘Gaganyaan’ “carrying the national flag”.

India could potentially become the fourth country to send a man in space, after the erstwhile USSR, the US and China. Denmark also has a manned space flight scheduled for 2022.

India has already completed missions to the moon and Mars.

A look at some of the challenges a space voyager faces:

1. Gravity field: Transitioning from one gravity field to another is tricky. It affects hand-eye and head-eye coordination. Nasa has learned that without gravity working on the human body, bones lose minerals. Even after you return from a space mission, you could be at greater risk of osteoporosis-related fractures. If you do not exercise and eat properly, you will lose muscle strength. You might also develop vision problems.

2. Isolation: No matter how well trained you are, behavioural issues are likely to crop up. Due to isolation, you may encounter depression, fatigue, sleep disorder and psychiatric disorders.

3. Radiation: In space stations, astronauts receive over ten times the radiation than what people are subjected to on Earth. Radiation exposure may increase the risk of cancer. It can damage the central nervous system. Radiation can also cause nausea, vomiting, anorexia, and fatigue.

4. Rockets: Rockets are extreme machines. Travelling in a rocket is like sitting on an exploding bomb which will push your speed from 0 kmph to 29,000 kmph in less than 30 minutes. Many things can go wrong during the launch phase, including the rocket exploding into a fireball. Many safety features have to be built into rocket systems to ensure the probability of loss of life is minimized. However, testing of all these systems in an actual operating environment is next to impossible and a calculated risk has to be taken while embarking on such a mission.

5. Hostile environment: Space is hostile. In addition to lack of gravity and danger of radiation, there is no atmosphere. Human blood starts boiling if there is no pressure. The ‘Gaganyaan’ has to create an atmosphere like Earth inside a small volume and ensure that adequate supply of oxygen, removal of carbon-dioxide and comfortable temperature and humidity levels are maintained throughout the mission.

All things necessary for supporting life like food, water, medicine, and human waste removal have to be addressed.

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